(UNDATED) - As the school year begins for some students this week, doctors and schools want to remind parents that the state's immunization requirements have changed slightly.
Two doses of Hepatitis A vaccine are now required for all incoming kindergarten students before they can attend school, and those two doses must be at least six months apart.
"It's kind of a national trend, and what we found is that when we required two doses for children, you virtually eliminate Hepatitis A in adults," said Melissa McMasters, coordinator of the immunization program for the Marion County Public Health Department.
Students entering sixth grade must now have a Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis/whooping cough) vaccine, a meningitis vaccine and two shots for chicken pox before the first day of school. And a new requirement for incoming high school seniors is a second immunization for meningitis.
"It's to get that final boost before college age, where you'd be living in a dormitory. That type of environment increases the risk for meningitis," McMasters said.
McMasters says most children will have received these vaccines if they are getting regular checkups with their pediatrician.
A list of the immunization requirements and any clinics that may be held can be obtained from any county health department.
Have a question or comment about a news story? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org