Most schools require children to be current on vaccinations before enrolling to protect the health of all students. Today’s childhood vaccines prevent serious and potentially life-threatening diseases, including polio, measles, whooping cough and chickenpox. Tatum Johnson, R.N., from the Metro Public Health Department joined us on a recent episode of Community Health Matters to discuss the immunizations your child needs before going back to school. View her segment here.

One of the most important things a parent can do for their child’s health is to have them vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control’s immunization schedule. And all children enrolling in Metro Nashville Public Schools must have an official Tennessee Certificate of Immunization. This certificate is required by state law and is only available from a private healthcare provider or from the Metro Public Health Department.

To enroll in kindergarten, all children must receive the following immunizations:

  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis
  • Hepatitis B
  • Poliomyelitis
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella
  • Varicella (Chickenpox)
  • Hepatitis A

Before entering 7th grade, students are required to be receive these additional immunizations:

  • Tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis booster
  • Verification of immunity to varicella

Looking for a Metro Public Health Department clinic near you? All of the middle Tennessee clinics listed below allow walk-in appointments for routine child and adult immunizations.

Lentz Public Health Center
Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

East Nashville Public Health Center
Monday – Friday, 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Woodbine Public Health Center
Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Thursday, 7 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.

For more information on how to guard your child against potentially life-threatening diseases, please visit CDC.gov/vaccines.

Zika

Do you have tropical travel plans this summer? If you’re concerned about the Zika virus, Dr. Morgan McDonald from the Tennessee Department of Health joined us on a recent episode of Community Health Matters to explain how to “pack to prevent” transmission of the virus. View her segment here.

Though Zika has fallen out of the international spotlight, it’s still a very real concern for those traveling to certain parts of the world. Currently Zika has spread throughout several regions in South and Central America, the Caribbean and Puerto Rico. In the continental U.S. there have been a few cases of local transmission in Florida and Texas, but all Tennessee cases have been the result of travel.

The virus is spread through a bite from an infected mosquito, sexual contact with an infected person, or transmission of infected blood products. After infection the virus can be difficult to detect because many people will have mild, flu-like symptoms or none at all.

The most common Zika symptoms include red eyes, fever, rash and joint pain. Although there isn’t a specific medicine or vaccine, symptoms can be treated with plenty of rest, fluids to prevent dehydration, and acetaminophen to reduce fever and pain.

However complications arise if the infected person is pregnant. Zika can cause microcephaly and other severe birth defects for pregnant women. For those returning from a Zika-infected area and who are trying to conceive, it is advised to postpone pregnancy for at least eight weeks for females and at least six months for males.

If you’re traveling to areas with the risk of Zika, take steps before, during and after travel to prevent mosquito bites and sexual transmission of the virus. “Pack to prevent” and keep yourself safe by bringing the following items:

  • Insect repellent
  • Long-sleeved shirts and long pants
  • Clothing and gear treated with permethrin
  • Bed net
  • Condoms

For more information on packing to prevent, visit CDC.gov/Zika.

 

Did you know HPV can lead to cancer and other serious health problems?  Dr. Michael Warren, deputy commissioner for population health at the Tennessee Department of Health, joined us on a recent episode of Community Healthy Matters to discuss the Human papillomavirus (HPV). View his segment here.

HPV is a common virus that can cause diseases ranging from warts to cervical cancer. There are more than 150 different strains that can manifest into a wide array of different symptoms. HPV is transmitted most frequently through intimate contact, so most adults who are sexually active have a risk and have probably come in contact with the disease.
Due to the variety of signs and symptoms of HPV, the disease is not always obvious. Many people who are infected may not be aware. Diagnosis can be made with a pap smear or physical exam.
There is no cure for HPV, so prevention is key. HPV vaccinations are recommended for both boys and girls at ages 11 to 12, and the vaccine is available through most health care providers and all county health departments. The vaccine is safe and typically included in the recommended vaccinations children receive from their primary care doctor.
To learn more about HPV and where you can receive the HPV vaccine, visit CDC.gov/HPV.

 

Did you know the recommended immunizations for children from birth through age six are designed to protect your child from more than 14 vaccine-preventable diseases, including:
• Chickenpox
• Diphtheria
• Hepatitis A and B
• Measles
• Mumps (and)
• Polio
For more information or to download an easy-to-read immunization schedule in English or Spanish , visit cdc.gov/vaccines.

Brian Todd from the Nashville Health Department to talk about ways to “Fight the Bite” to protect your family from mosquito bites and the importance of including immunizations in your back-to-school planning this summer.

There are vaccines designed and recommended to protect people at every age. Students entering public schools are required to have certain immunizations upon entering Kindergarten and seventh grade, as well as children who are new enrollees in a Tennessee school at other grade levels. For more information on Tennessee requirements for student vaccinations, visit Nashville.gov and search “school immunizations.”

Tennessee is one of the most challenging places in the U.S. to live with allergies. Pediatrician Hillary Hunt from Tennessee Medicine and Pediatrics joins us to discuss allergies, testing and treatment options in children.

Breast milk is a unique nutritional source that is superior to almost any other food for infants, including formula. Discussing the benefits, challenges and helpful tips concerning breastfeeding is Jill Bennett, a Child Birth Educator with Saint Thomas Midtown.
Brian Todd  from the Nashville Health Department to talk about ways to “Fight the Bite” to protect your family from mosquito bites and the importance of including immunizations in your back-to-school planning this summer.

May’s topics include breast cancer research, staying active as you age, and vaccines for measles and other preventable diseases.

Research into the causes, prevention and treatment of breast cancer is being done in many medical centers throughout the world, including right here in Middle Tennessee. Patty Harman of Komen Greater Nashville and Dr. Deborah Lannigan from Vanderbilt University talks about current research into the causes of breast cancer.

As we age, it’s important to know how to live well, access services, and remain active and involved. Janet Jernigan of FiftyForward talks about how to continue to make the most of life from age 50 on.

Measles, a disease once considered eradicated in the U.S., has been making a comeback. In the first two months of 2015, 170 people from 17 states were reported to have been diagnosed with measles. State epidemiologist Dr. Tim Jones talks about vaccines for measles and other preventable diseases.

Did you know immunizations are a simple, safe and effective way to protect children and adults from a wide variety of potentially deadly diseases?

For vaccines to be most beneficial, they need to be administered on-time according to the schedule recommended by pediatricians and the Centers for Disease Control. So protect yourself, your child, and the members of your community around you by getting immunized to protect against preventable diseases. For more information on the benefits of immunizations, visit immunize.org

Measles, a disease once considered eradicated in the U.S., has been making a comeback. In the first two months of 2015, 170 people from 17 states were reported to have been diagnosed with measles. State epidemiologist Dr. Tim Jones talks about vaccines for measles and other preventable diseases.