SSM Health Medical Minute – Stay on track with your child’s vaccinations

Medical Minute

ST. LOUIS – Vaccines can prevent infectious diseases and staying on track is of utmost importance, especially during the pandemic.

Vaccines are recommended for your child based on their age.

Dr. Ken Haller, a SLUCare pediatrician at SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital, says the schedule of recommended immunizations may vary depending upon your child’s health and the type of vaccines, but staying on schedule is critical.

Parents and guardians may not have kept track of immunizations during the COVID-19 quarantine or may be concerned about going to a hospital where the sick people are.

Cardinal Glennon is being extremely careful to prevent exposure to coronavirus. Surfaces are wiped down, all healthcare workers are wearing masks or eye coverings.

“We are really good at this,” Haller said.

Pre-screenings are taking place to ensure that hospitals or the medical offices attached to hospitals are extremely safe.

Dr. Haller says they are likely safer than going to the grocery store or retail stores.

“We make sure we separate out the (healthy) kids from the sick kids. So if you are coming in for a (wellness) visit, there are separate hallways for well-child visits,” he said. “We do everything we can to keep contact limited.”

Vaccines are our best protection against a number of serious, and sometimes deadly, diseases.

“Kids could get measles or whooping cough if they do not receive their vaccines. We give these vaccines at 2 months, 4 months, and so-on, until 2 years of life,” he said. “If we delay them, kids could end up getting really sick for something we could have prevented.”

“The important reason to get vaccines on time is so that there is not a period where you are more susceptible to the disease so the vaccine can build on itself to develop immunity.”

If delayed, kids will still get protection, but the idea is to stick to the schedule so there is no period where your child is more at risk.

“Get your children vaccinated on time,” Haller said.

He also says that adults should stay current with their vaccines too.

To find a pediatrician, click here.

The SSM Health Medical Minute airs Wednesdays on KPLR 11 at 7pm and FOX 2 News at 9pm.

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