The most effective way to prevent tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (often called whooping cough) is through vaccination with DTaP for infants and children and with the Tdap booster for preteens, teens, and adults.Starting in 2013, South Carolina 7th graders faced a new school entry requirement – showing proof of a Tdap booster vaccine.
Helping to ensure that all rising 7th graders are healthy and ready for school this coming fall, our central and regional public health teams are currently offering Tdap clinics in schools across the state. Expanding on the success of last year’s School Located Vaccination Clinics, our clinics not only make it easier for children to access the vaccine, they also make it more convenient for parents who would normally have to take time off from work to get their child vaccinated.
As part of our ongoing efforts to prepare students and their parents for the new school year, our Lowcountry team has been working collaboratively with local schools– vaccinating over 400 6th graders in just 5 days earlier this month. Speaking to his team’s success, DHEC Public Health Director for the Lowcountry Public Health Region Nicholas Davidson said, “We are building new partnerships with both public and private schools to expand School Located Vaccination Clinics to all counties within the regions. There has been positive feedback from several school nurses, that ‘because of DHEC’s Tdap School Located Vaccination efforts, the parents are sending back proof of the Tdap vaccination earlier this year.’ We are excited that the Lowcountry’s efforts, to educate about the Tdap 7th grade vaccination requirement, are increasing of the number children vaccinated.”
For more information about our Tdap vaccination clinics, clickhere.
August is National Immunization Awareness Month, and this week concentrates on “A Healthy Start” for moms and babies.
One way to give your child a “Healthy Start” is for expecting mothers to get a Tdap (Tetanus, Diphtheria and Pertussis) booster shot, which protects mom and baby from pertussis known as “Whooping cough.” The CDC recommends mothers get their Tdap vaccination in the third trimester between 27 and 36 weeks of each pregnancy.
Pertussis is extremely dangerous for infants, yet is entirely preventable. Mom can also get some help in protecting her child from pertussis by “Cocooning” and ensuring each parent, grandparents, siblings, or anyone else around the baby is also up to date on their Tdap vaccine.
The CDC just released the results of their National Immunization Survey-Teen and there is good news for South Carolina students. The percentage of young people ages 13-17 who received a Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis) vaccine rose from 64.9% to 71.9% between 2012 and 2013. During this same time period, meningococcal coverage also rose from 58.5% to 68.7%.
But the biggest gain came in HPV coverage. South Carolina saw an 18.5% increase in females who received one or more doses of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine between 2012 and 2013, jumping from 41.9% to 60.4% and prompting national recognition from the CDC for our impressive increase in coverage rates.