A lot is different this year, but some things are the same as always. Your kids are still growing and learning—and they still need routine vaccines to keep them healthy and safe.
Vaccines protect kids, families, and entire communities from dangerous diseases like measles, tetanus, and even some kinds of cancer. Getting your children vaccinated also protects kids and adults who can’t get vaccinated due to allergies or other health issues. If you’ve fallen behind, that’s OK. Doctors’ offices are safe, open, and ready to help your family make a plan to catch up.
Check-ups and vaccinations are free for Health Share members and most insurance plans. Call your doctor or clinic today!
Doctors and nurses are your partners in protecting your child’s health. They’re ready to answer questions if you want more information or if you aren’t sure which vaccines your child needs.
Here are some questions you may want to ask:
When making the appointment:
- What extra precautions is your office taking to keep patients safe during COVID-19?
- I have more than one child. Can I schedule back-to-back appointments for my children?
- What can I do to prepare my child before our visit?
At the appointment:
- Which vaccines does my child need now?
- Which vaccines does my child need in the next year?
- Can I have a list of all of the vaccines that my child needs for daycare or school, or to play on a team?
- Can you help me make a plan for my child to catch up on vaccines?
- How will my child feel after receiving the vaccines? Are there any possible side effects?
- Can I schedule appointments now for the next vaccines my child needs?
If you’re a Health Share member:
- Contact your medical health plan listed on the back of your member ID card.
- If you don't have a member ID card and don't know who your pediatrician or family doctor is, we can help you find a doctor who's a good fit for your family and culture. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 503-416-8090.
If you don’t have insurance:
- Check your eligibility for the Oregon Health Plan (OHP). OHP is open to all children and teens younger than 19—regardless of immigration status—who meet income and other criteria.
- You can apply for OHP any time of the year.
- You can also visit one of the 33 Federally Qualified Health Centers – find the one closest to you.
If you have insurance, but not Health Share:
- Call your insurance company or visit their website. They will be able to help you find a doctor who is covered by your insurance.
Vaccine schedules list the age when each vaccine is recommended. Doctors and disease experts develop them to provide the most protection from diseases while keeping the timing of vaccines safe.
Download the schedule to learn which vaccines your child may need. If you’ve fallen behind, that’s OK. Your child’s doctor can help your family make a plan to catch up.
**Your doctor may recommend different timing or a different number of doses if your child is behind on shots — they will work with you to make the best plan for your child.
When your kids get their routine vaccinations, you’re protecting your family and the entire community from 16 dangerous diseases. To protect your child, it's important to get all the recommended vaccines and to catch up as soon as possible if you’ve fallen behind.
Talk to your doctor if you need more information about these infections or the vaccines that prevent them.
Causes an itchy rash of blisters and a fever. Can be serious, even life-threatening.
Causes a thick coating in the back of the nose or throat that makes it hard to breathe or swallow. Can be deadly.
Causes fever, cough, and muscle aches. Spreads easily and can cause serious illness like pneumonia. Can result in hospitalization and death.
Causes a serious liver disease. Children often don’t have symptoms, but they can pass the disease to others.
Causes a liver disease that often becomes chronic, or lifelong, in some people and is contagious. Can cause serious health problems such as liver cancer.
Hib (Haemophilus influenzae type B)
Causes serious diseases including meningitis (infection of brain and spinal cord) and pneumonia. Can cause lifelong disability and be deadly. Babies and children younger than 5 are most at risk.
Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)
Can lead to six types of cancer. Getting the HPV vaccine for your child is the best way to prevent them from getting certain types of cancer later in life.
Causes a rash and a fever and can cause pneumonia. It can be very serious, and can cause deafness and death. It is highly contagious.
Causes very serious infections including infections of the lining of the brain and spinal cord as well as bloodstream infections. Can be deadly or cause long-term disabilities.
Causes swollen glands and fatigue and is contagious. Can cause long-term health problems such as deafness and swelling of the brain.
Can cause infections of the ears, lungs, blood and brain. It can be serious and cause lifelong disability or death. Children younger than 2 are among those most at risk.
Causes lifelong paralysis (can’t move parts of the body) and is highly contagious.
Causes severe diarrhea and vomiting. Affects mostly babies and young children and can lead to serious dehydration (loss of body fluid).
Causes rash and fever and is especially dangerous for pregnant women. Can cause miscarriage, serious birth defects or death of a baby just after it is born.
Can cause breathing problems, painful muscle spasms and paralysis. As many as 1 out of 5 people who get tetanus dies.
Whooping cough (pertussis)
Causes violent coughing fits. It is most harmful for young babies and can be deadly.
Source: “Diseases & the Vaccines that Prevent Them.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/diseases/index.html Accessed September 11, 2020.