CUMBERLAND — Changes to school immunization requirements by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene affect students entering kindergarten and seventh grade for the next school year.
Children entering kindergarten must receive two doses of Varicella (chickenpox) vaccine by August instead of just one dose.
Students in seventh grade are now required to have a single dose of Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis) and a single dose of Meningococcal (meningitis) vaccine.
A child has up to 20 days from the start of school to show proof of vaccinations or have an appointment card to get the missing immunizations.
The health department will receive a limited amount of the required vaccinations for seventh-graders but parents are encouraged to first seek vaccinations through their child’s primary care provider.
Vaccine clinics will be held May 13 and 14 from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Allegany County Health Department, 12501 Willowbrook Road. Vaccines are free of charge and no appointment is necessary.
For more information, visit http://phpa.dhmh.maryland.gov/OIDEOR/IMMUN/SitePages/back-to-school-immunization-requirements.aspx or http://www.immunize.org/vis. Questions about the health department vaccination clinic can be directed to 301-759-5093.