Immunizations key to healthy school year

Published: August 15, 2014

School is back in session, and that means it’s time to make sure your child’s immunizations are up to date.

Florida requires certain vaccines to be administered before children may attend child care or school.

Making sure your child’s vaccinations are up to date is one of the most important actions you can take to ensure the health of your child, as well as your family, infants who are not yet vaccinated and the community as a whole. If you’re unsure whether your child’s immunizations are up to date, don’t delay: call your pediatrician now to find out.

Thanks to vaccines, many of the diseases we vaccinate against today have become very rare. But outbreaks still happen, and unvaccinated children are vulnerable to potentially fatal illnesses. In 2014 alone, the Centers for Disease Control reported 18 measles outbreaks and a 24 percent increase in whooping cough cases.

A simple trip to the doctor will help prevent such outbreaks.

Immunizations required for children attending Florida schools and day cares include:

For children enrolling in child care and /or family day care:

  • Diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTaP)
  • Inactivated polio vaccine (IPV)
  • Measles-mumps-rubella (MMR)
  • Varicella (chickenpox)
  • Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
  • Pneumococcal conjugate (PCV)

For children enrolling in public/non-public preschool:

  • DTaP
  • IPV
  • MMR
  • Hepatitis B (hep B)
  • Varicella
  • Hib

For children enrolling in public/non-public schools, kindergarten through 12th grade:

  • Four or five doses of DTaP
  • Three, four or five doses of IPV
  • Two doses of MMR
  • Two or three doses of hep B
  • Two doses of varicella vaccine. Varicella vaccine is not required if there is a history of varicella disease documented by the health care provider.

Additional immunization requirements for 7th grade entry

  • One tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis (Tdap)


In addition, doctors recommend getting all children over 6 months of age an influenza shot as soon as they become available in the fall.

For more information, please contact:
UF Health Media Relations