Infant Immunizations - Healthcare Providers
Your Strong Recommendation to Vaccinate Makes All the Difference
While health departments work hard to ensure that appropriate vaccine information is available, public health officials must work in partnership with healthcare providers to address parents' individual needs and concerns. Vaccinations for young children have been known to fall off after their first year, so encouraging your patients at every visit to follow the recommended immunization schedule is more important than ever. Please continue to emphasize to parents the importance of routine and timely vaccination.
Helpful Charts and Posters
"Protect Your Babies," a new campaign from the Texas Department of State Health Services, provides easy-to-follow materials to help you inform your patients.
View the recommended childhood immunization schedule from the CDC.
Access DSHS literature and publications to order more detailed Vaccine Information Statements (VIS).
Tools and Programs for Patients
Here are some tools and programs offered in the state of Texas:
If a child has missed some vaccines or needs a booster, see the CDC's webpage on Birth-18 Years & "Catch-up" Immunization Schedules to determine a personalized plan of needed vaccines.
Please be sure to register as an authorized ImmTrac healthcare provider. Then, discuss with your patients the benefits of consenting to store their families' immunization records in ImmTrac, the secure and confidential Texas Immunization Registry. This will help parents keep track of their child's immunization history, even if they move to a different city or switch doctors.
Websites for Parents
Help ensure your infant and toddler patients receive needed vaccinations. You can start by referring parents to the infant-specific section of the Immunize Texas website.
Parents can protect their preteens by keeping them on the recommended schedule for adolescents.
Communication Strategies -- How to Have a Successful Dialogue
An excerpt from
Talking with Parents about Vaccines for Infants
A successful discussion about vaccines involves a two-way conversation, with both parties sharing information and asking questions. These communications principles can help you connect with patients by encouraging open, honest, and productive dialogue.
Take advantage of early opportunities such as the prenatal, newborn, 1-week, and 1-month visits to initiate a dialogue about vaccines. These also are good opportunities to provide take-home materials or direct parents to immunization websites that you trust. This gives parents time to read and digest reputable vaccine information before the first and all future immunizations. And when parents have questions, you can build on the reputable information that they already have reviewed. With parents who have many questions, consider an extended visit to discuss vaccinating their child.
Vaccines are Safe
Parents want to know whether a vaccine is safe for their child. It is important to provide clear answers and correct any misinformation in a helpful, reassuring way. This infographic from the CDC can be a handy tool when explaining the testing that occurs with every recommended vaccination.