This week is Infant Immunization Week. Bonnie Van Der Weerdt at Pella Regional Health Center tells us the reason infant immunization is so important is because infant immune systems are much weaker and they have a hard time fighting off disease. She says if infants were not immunized, make up immunizations can be scheduled for older children. She says infants don’t have a problem getting the shots, most of the time, the parents are the ones who take it the hardest. When infants are taken in for checkups, the doctor will remind parents about what immunizations are needed in the near future.
Judi Van Hulzen, a nurse at Marion County Public Health, encourages all parents to update their children’s vaccinations. She says that immunizations protect not just your child, but also the community. Once a virus is picked up by an infant, it can spread quickly to others. She says not only are there a number of immunizations that are recommended for infants and toddlers, but there are also vaccinations recommended for 12-year-olds as well. Pertussis has been a factor in Iowa schools recently. Van Hulzen says that they have vaccinations available to help prevent contracting that disease.