It seems as though summer just started, and we’re already talking about going back to school. That’s because now is the right time to be thinking about getting your child’s medical exams and immunizations covered.
Exams and physicals. Most sports (both school and community) will require that your child or teen have an annual physical. You’ll see ads for retail clinics in stores and also physicals being held at the schools, but keep these things in mind:
- Those places don’t have your child’s medical records. Medical and immunization histories aren’t available to the person doing the physical or administering the immunizations.
- They haven’t developed a relationship with you to know what is normal and appropriate for your family.
- Follow up is minimal or altogether unavailable.
- No nutritional counseling is available, which we believe to be extremely important.
For all those reasons and more, we highly recommend that you see your own pediatrician for back-to-school exams and immunizations. (Check out our 2013 blog on store-based clinics here.)
Immunizations. Many immunizations are required by the state, and there are some additional ones recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). For example, Kentucky requires the meningitis vaccine for the 6th grade; we also are doing a booster at the age of 16 which isn’t state required but is recommended by both the CDC and AAP. A printable immunization schedule for parents is available here from the CDC.
Plan to arrange your pediatric appointments soon, so your teens and children will have everything they need before school starts.
In between your summer travel plans, pool days and sporting events, don’t forget to make room for health.
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