We understand that when it comes to keeping your children and family healthy, there is a lot of information available. Learn which immunizations your child or family members need, where to get your family immunized, and how to obtain a copy of your child’s immunization records.
It's easy to think of these as diseases that only existed in the past. But the truth is, they still exist. Children in the United States can, and do, still get some of these diseases. You may have never seen a case of polio or diphtheria, but they still occur in other countries. All it takes is a plane ride for these diseases to arrive in your community.
Before a vaccine is approved and given to children, it is tested extensively. Scientists and medical professionals carefully evaluate all the available information about the vaccine to determine its safety and effectiveness. Although there may be some discomfort or tenderness at the injection site, this is minor compared to the serious complications that can result from the diseases these vaccines prevent. Serious side effects from vaccines are very rare.
Getting your child vaccinated helps protect others in your community—like your neighbor who has cancer and cannot get certain vaccines, or your friend's newborn baby who is too young to be fully vaccinated. When everyone in a community who can get vaccinated does get vaccinated, it helps to prevent the spread of disease and can slow or stop an outbreak.
Immunizations are available at a number of locations across Idaho. Immunizations may be available for you and your child at your healthcare provider’s office or your local public health district. Contact your local public health districts or community health center to schedule an immunization.
Routine childhood vaccines are available to Idaho children, under the age of 19 years, at no cost or at a significantly reduced cost. The vaccine itself is free through medical providers who participate in the state vaccine program, though the provider may charge a fee to administer the vaccine. All local public health districts participate in the state vaccine program, as do most pediatricians and family practice physicians.
Contact your primary care provider to see if they are a participant.
Whenever children are brought into group settings, there is a potential for the spread of infectious disease. To help protect your child and others from vaccine-preventable diseases, certain immunizations are required before children may attend licensed childcare facilities and public, private, and parochial schools in Idaho. See IDAPA 16.02.11 for Immunization Requirements for Licensed Daycare Facility Attendees and IDAPA 16.02.15 for Immunization Requirements for Idaho School Children.
Children are in the process of getting caught up on required immunizations are permitted to attend school and childcare under a conditional enrollment, if the child has received one dose of each specified vaccine prior to enrollment and is not yet due to receive the remaining doses.
In the event of a disease outbreak, children who are conditionally enrolled and have not received the immunization against that disease are to be encouraged to complete immunizations or are to be excluded from school and/or childcare. These children are at most risk for contracting a vaccine-preventable disease.
The Department of Health and Welfare (DHW) strongly supports immunization as one of the easiest and most effective tools in preventing serious infectious diseases. These vaccine-preventable diseases can cause serious illness and even death. DHW also recognizes that parents have the right to make the decision whether or not to vaccinate their children. If you have any questions about the benefits and risks of immunization, contact your healthcare provider or local public health district.
Idaho law allows a parent or guardian to claim an immunization exemption for their child for medical, religious or other reasons. A medical exemption must be completed by a licensed physician. It is recommended that exemptions for religious or other reasons be documented on the form provided by DHW's Immunization Program. Parents or guardians also may claim an immunization exemption by providing a signed written statement when entering their child into school and/or childcare. In the event of a disease outbreak, children who have claimed an exemption and have not received the immunization against that disease may be excluded from school and/or childcare.
Idaho School Immunization Requirements Exemption
Idaho Childcare Immunization Requirements Exemption
A copy of your child's immunization record may be obtained from his/her primary care provider’s office, the clinic that administered the vaccine(s), or any healthcare provider or facility with which he/she has an established medical relationship.
The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention website also provides information regarding lost or missing immunization records. For more information and recommendations regarding immunization records, visit: www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/admin/immuniz-records.