Texas & Okla. students required to get back-to-school shots

GRAYSON COUNTY, TX -- Most Texas students will head back to school next week, but before they enter those doors they are required by state law to get their immunization shots. Classes have already started for most Oklahoma students, but if your child has not been vaccinated yet health officials have some advice for you.

Health officials say the seconds it takes to get vaccinated can save you and your child days of sickness, aches and pain -- or worse.

"It prevents your child, your loved one from contracting these communicable diseases which could ultimately lead to their demise," Amanda Ortez, with the Grayson County Health Department, said.

Oklahoma and Texas have many of the same immunization requirements, including vaccines for Diphtheria/Tetanus/Pertussis, Chicken Pox and Polio. Grayson County Health Department Director Amanda Ortez says vaccinating your kids protects other children as well.

"Being around other children and your ill then that could lead to them contracting the same disease and then lead to an outbreak, either within an isolated school or throughout the independent school district," Ortez said.

To prevent that they are holding immunization clinics at the health department in Sherman this Wednesday through Friday. Staff will give the shots to students who are uninsured, under-insured, or recipients of Medicaid. She says parents must bring in their child's shot records.

"It's first come first serve and it's while supplies last," Ortez said.

Ortez says getting vaccinated is your best bet to avoid communicable diseases, but the shots are not a guarantee your child will not get sick. She says if your child does get sick this school year keep them home until they are well.

"Make sure that child is fever free for at least 24 hours and if there is a gastro-intestinal illness such as diarrhea. Then you want to keep that child at home as well until they are no longer symptomatic," Ortez said.

For more on immunization requirements visit the links below.

Oklahoma Vaccination requirements:

http://www.ok.gov/health2/documents/IMM_School&Childcare_Guide_Imm_Reqs_OK_%202014-15.pdf

Texas Vaccination requirements:

https://www.dshs.state.tx.us/immunize/school/default.shtm


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