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Adolescent Immunization Awareness Month

Vaccines aren’t just for infants; adolescents and adults need to be protected against disease as well. April is Adolescent Immunization Awareness Month in North Carolina, and the N.C. Division of Public Health is reminding parents to protect their teens and pre-teens by bringing them up to date on required and recommended vaccinations.

Most vaccines are required when a child enters school for the first time in kindergarten. State law also requires a dose of Tdap vaccine for all rising 6th graders or those who will reach 12 years of age on or after August 1. Children who have had a tetanus shot within the past five years may be exempt from the requirement.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also recommends that older children receive a booster shot of varicella (chicken pox) vaccine, as well as vaccinations against meningitis, HPV, hepatitis A and influenza.