Should Flu Shots Be Mandatory?

Many parents in New Jersey are up in arms over their state's requirement for children to receive a flu shot before being allowed to enter pre-school or daycare.  So far New Jersey is the only state to require this vaccination.  Will other states follow suit?  Here are some facts from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding children and the flu:

  • Each year an average of 20,000 children under the age of 5 are hospitalized because of flu complications

  • During the 2007-08 flu season, CDC was notified of 86 child deaths due to flu-related complications

  • Severe complications are most common in children younger than 2

  • Children under the age of 5 more commonly need medical care for flu-related systems and complications

  • Children with chronic health problems like asthma and diabetes are at especially high risk of developing serious complications

The CDC is recommending that all children over 6 months of age get vaccinated as well as all cargivers for children under the age of six months. 

If you have questions, consult with your pediatrician.  My pediatrician's office is highly recommending the shot for all kids over 6 months of age that are at high risk for serious complications.  Otherwise, they say it is a personal choice.  

Let me know your thoughts and what your doctor is saying.


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