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What You Should Know About The CDC Immunization Schedule

June 4, 2019

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) new Immunization Schedule is out. As your baby grows up, he or she may be exposed to many infectious, potentially life-threatening diseases. The safest thing to do is prevent these diseases from occurring by properly vaccinating your child.

Vaccines help your immune system develop protection from a disease. The substance introduced to your body is used to stimulate the production of antibodies. The vaccine is prepared from the causative agent of a disease, its products, or a synthetic substitute that’s treated to act as an antigen without inducing the disease. Instead, the agent stimulates your body's immune system to recognize the agent as foreign, destroy it, and "remember" it. This allows your immune system to more easily recognize and destroy any of these microorganisms if it encounters them again.

The CDC publishes a new immunization schedule for babies and adolescents every year. It includes a “catch-up” chart for children who may have missed a vaccination, and there’s even a chart for adults.

For the purposes of this post, we are focusing on the CDC immunization schedule for children. Here is the schedule for 2019:

Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis (DTaP)

2 months

4 months

6 months

15-18 months

4-6 years

11-12 years (booster shot)

Hepatitis A

12-23 months (two shots, with second shot given 6-18 months after the first)

7-18 years (three doses)

Hepatitis B

At birth

1-2 months

6-18 months

7-18 years (two doses) 

Haemophilus Influenza Type B (Hib)

2 months

4 months

6 months (not necessary if ComVax or PedvaxHIB was given at 2-4 months)

12-15 months

Human Papillomavirus (HPV)*

11 or 12 years (three shots)

Influenza

6 months – 18 years (yearly)

*You’ll find additional information on the HPV vaccine here.

Meningococcal

11-12 years

16 years (booster)

Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR)**

12-15 months

4-6 years

**The MMR vaccine is key to protecting particularly vulnerable patient populations, including infants, pregnant women and those who are immunosuppressed, Measles is a highly contagious, vaccine-preventable viral disease that spreads easily through the air and through touching infected surfaces and contact with one's eyes, nose or mouth. Measles virus can live up to two hours in an airspace where an infected person coughed or sneezed, and 90 percent of non-immune persons walking into that room will become infected.

Pneumococcal (PCV)

2 months

4 months

6 months

12-15 months 

Polio

2 months

4 months

6-18 months

4-6 years

Rotavirus

2 months

4 months

6 months (not necessary if Rotarix vaccine was given at 2-4 months) 

Varicella

12-15 months

4-6 years

When you look at the chart, you’ll notice the vaccine footnotes are now called "notes." The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices urges family physicians and other clinicians to read the notes to optimize their ability to recommend appropriate vaccines.

If your child has missed any of the vaccinations mentioned above, you should talk to your doctor. You can also download our vaccine checklist to help you decide.

Download our What you Need to Know About Vaccines Guide Now!