MDCH Recognizes April 24-May 1, 2010 as National Infant Immunization WeekContact: James McCurtis, Jr. (517) 241-2112Agency: Community Health
April 28, 2010
This is National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW), and the Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) encourage parents to find out if their children are up-to-date on needed vaccines. NIIW is aimed at raising awareness about the importance of childhood immunizations. Each year, hundreds of children in Michigan become ill from diseases that could have been prevented by basic childhood immunizations.
"National Infant Immunization Week provides a valuable opportunity for health professionals to remind people how important it is for children to be fully vaccinated," said MDCH Director Janet Olszewski. "Childhood immunizations remain one of the best ways for parents to protect their children against 14 vaccine-preventable diseases."
Infants are especially vulnerable to diseases - that's why it's so important to protect them through immunizations. Serious diseases such as measles, mumps, and whooping cough are still a threat to children. For example, in 2009 Michigan saw a sharp increase in the number of whooping cough cases, with over 900 confirmed and probable cases in that year alone. Whooping cough can be especially severe in young infants less than 6 months of age, who are at highest risk of severe illness, complications, and even death.
To protect against whooping cough, it's important to immunize infants on time. Children need DTaP vaccine, while adolescents and adults need to receive Tdap. When all of the family members and other contacts around children are immunized, this provides additional protection.
Immunizations are safe and effective. Vaccines are thoroughly tested before being approved. Even after they are approved, public health officials continue to carefully monitor vaccines. Vaccination is still one of the best ways to protect your child from vaccine-preventable diseases. For more information, visit www.vaccinateyourbaby.org or call the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at 1-800-CDC-INFO. For more information about NIIW, visit http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/events/NIIW/.