Routine Checkups are urged for Tennessee kids before school starts

Parents should catch their kids up on missed doctor visits – and in some cases, vaccinations – to protect themselves and their communities before they return to school. That’s the message in a new report by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Georgetown University Health Policy Institute. Earlier this year, the C-D-C reported that orders for all non-influenza childhood vaccines had decreased by around 11-million doses, a direct result of fewer pediatric visits. Kinika Young of the Tennessee Justice Center says the consequences for communities could be dire.

The report says visits to providers’ offices fell by 58-percent for all age groups in March of last year, and visits for toddlers dropped 75-percent — the largest decline by any age group. Some parents don’t immunize children for religious reasons; others worry about potential health risks of some vaccines, although those are reported to be extremely rare.

For more information on recommended childhood immunizations, parents can visit the Tennessee Department of Health website.