NM requires students to be up-to-date on vaccines before school begins | KOB 4

NM requires students to be up-to-date on vaccines before school begins

Casey Torres
August 08, 2019 07:16 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- Before heading back to school, the state requires students to be up to date on their immunizations.

According to the New Mexico Department of Health, these vaccines are required to register a student:

  • Diphtheria/Tetanus/Pertussis (DTaP/DT/Td)
  • Hepatitis B (HepB)
  • Tetanus/Diphtheria/Pertussis (Tdap)
  • Pneumococcal (PCV)
  • Polio
  • Varicella (VAR)
  • Measles/Mumps/Rubella (MMR)
  • Hepatitis A (HepA)
  • Haemophilus Influenzae type B (Hib)
  • Meningococcal Men (ACWY)           

Each grade level requires a different dose. Some students can be exempt.

Dolores Cordova, a nurse practitioner at Clinica La Esperanza in the south valley, said immunizations are important to protect a child.

She said a misconception is that all vaccines contain live viruses.

"They're killed viruses. So what happens is your body sees this and already starts building the defense," she explained. "The white blood cells go in and see it's foreign."

Kids can experience a low grade fever, fatigue or lack of appetite 24 hours after the injection.

Cordova said parents should not worry. 

"It's dead (viruses), so you don't get sick from the disease. You don't get sick from the immunization. Your body is actually building a defense," she said.

If a child experiences any of those symptoms, Cordova recommends using acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

Kids under six months of age should only be given acetaminophen. Visit a doctor if the symptoms last longer than a day.

Most importantly, Cordova said it's important to not skip booster shots.

"If you do not do it in a timely manner, you have to restart," she said.

New Mexico allows for people to opt out of vaccines for religious or medical reasons.


Casey Torres

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