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Students Need Second Chickenpox Vaccine

Last updated on Monday, July 15, 2013

(UNDATED) - State health officials are urging parents to check on their child’s vaccination record before the start of a new school year.

The requirements have changed for the varicella vaccine, which protects against chickenpox.

"With two doses, even if your child does get chickenpox, chances are it will be really mild and the child will be back to school before you know it and, in fact, we are seeing very few hospitalization with kids who have cases of chickenpox, so we are keeping kids out of the hospital and healthy," said Dr. Joan Duwve, chief medical officer with the Indiana State Department of Health.

Children going into fourth, fifth or sixth grade will likely need the second dose before starting the 2013-2014 school year. In Indiana, students are required to be up-to-date on their immunizations to attend an accredited school.

Children with allergies or other health issues can be excused by a doctor from getting a vaccine. Families with religious objections to vaccinations must file a written letter with the school at the start of each school year.

The State Department of Health offers MyVaxIndiana, an online database where doctors and parents can securely access immunization records.

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