Pediatricians suggest vaccination timetable for kids, teens

University of Miami pediatrician Judith Schaechter gives an HPV vaccination to a 13-year-old girl in her office at the Miller School of Medicine.
University of Miami pediatrician Judith Schaechter gives an HPV vaccination to a 13-year-old girl in her office at the Miller School of Medicine.

To best protect young people from preventable diseases, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has released an immunization timetable to outline when and how to vaccinate children and teenagers at different stages of their development.

Several portions of the influenza vaccine schedule were amended. The routine recommendations on whether to administer one or two doses of the Influenza vaccine has been clarified. A paragraph which outlined when it was appropriate to use the live attenuated influenza vaccine was changed to a bulleted list for readability. The Haemophilus influenza vaccine is not recommended for kids under the age of 5 who aren’t at high-risk for the flu.

Poliovirus vaccinations received new information on which doses of trivalent oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV) can be counted as valid. If it was administered after April 1, 2016, it should not be considered valid while if it had been given before that date it can be counted.

A note on routine catch-up vaccinations for Hepatitis A through the age of 18 has been added. As for Hepatitis B, re-vaccination is not recommended for those who have already received the vaccine. However, at-risk individuals such as infants born to mothers with Hepatitis B, hemodialysis patients or others with compromised immune systems may need to be revaccinated.

Minor changes to the meningococcal serogroup B vaccines were made with a heading being changed and a reference link being added for clarification purposes. New guidelines have been issued for children who had previously received the MenACWY meningitis vaccine before the age of 10. For kids at increased risk to whom vaccinations for a meningococcal disease would not normally be recommended:

  • MenACWY vaccination should follow the recommended schedule with Dose 1 given between the ages of 11 and 12, with Dose 2 being given at the age of 16.
  • Children with HIV, complement deficiency, asplenia or other high-risk complicators for meningococcal disease should follow the booster schedule for those at increased risk.

Clarification was issued on two tetanus vaccines: the Diphteria-tetanus-acellular pertussis, or DTaP and the Tetanus toxoid reduced diphtheria toxoid and acellular pertussis absorbed (Tdap) vaccine.

Tdap was made available as a booster doses option and for the remaining doses of the catch-up series. For DTaP, If a child’s inoculation needs to be caught up, dose 5 is not necessary if they received Dose 4 at the age of four and at least six months after they received Dose 3.

Guidance was also issued for both tetanus vaccines for children between the ages of 7 and 18:

  • Children receiving Tdap who are 7 to 9 years old should receive the routine dose between the ages of 11 and 12.
  • Ten-year-old children who received Tdap do not need to receive the routine dose they would get between the ages of 11 and 12.
  • If DTaP was administered unintentionally after the child’s seventh birthday for children aged 7 to 9, it can count as a catch-up with the routine dose of Tdap being given between the ages of 11 and 12. If the child was between the ages of 10 and 18 years it can be counted as the adolescent Tdap booster.

America’s authority on pediatric medicine for nearly 100 years, The AAP’s recommendations help protect children across American from preventable diseases. A simplified version of the children and adolescent vaccination timeline is available on the Center for Disease Control’s website.