Recommended Immunization Schedule

When I was studying for the NCLEX, I was dedicated to my flashcards. A term on the front, a definition on the back, and I was good to go. I carried them around everywhere because they were easy to make, convenient to whip out during the five minutes between ordering a latte and actually receiving it, and were effective. However, when I was trying to study the recommended immunization schedule for pediatrics up to age 6, I was stumped. How was I going to cram an entire chart onto a 5x3 index card? Luckily, I figured out a system: making the vaccination the term on the front of the card, and the recommended dates of administration the definition on the back.

What You Need to Know

Here are the required immunizations, with age of administration. Let’s break it down by vaccine.

Hepatitis B (HepB):

  • 1st dose administered at birth

  • 2nd dose administered at 1–2 months of age

  • 3rd dose at 6–18 months

Rotavirus (RV):

  • 1st dose at 2 months

  • 2nd dose at 4 months

Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Acellular Pertussis (DTaP):

  • 1st dose at 2 months

  • 2nd dose at 4 months

  • 3rd dose at 6 months

  • 4th dose at 15–18 months

Haemophilus Influenzae B (HiB):

  • 1st dose at 2 months

  • 2nd dose at 4 months

  • 3rd dose at 12–15 months

Pneumococcal conjugate (PCV):

  • 1st dose at 2 months

  • 2nd dose at 4 months

  • 3rd dose at 6 months

  • 4th dose at 12–15 months

Poliovirus (IPV)

  • 1st dose at 2 months

  • 2nd dose at 4 months

  • 3rd dose at 6–18 months

  • 4th dose at 4–6 years old

Influenza:

  • Annually, beginning at 6 months

Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR):

  • 1st dose at 12–15 months

  • 2nd dose at 4–6 years

Varicella (chicken pox)

  • 1st dose at 12–15 months

  • 2nd dose at 4–6 years

Why is it Important to Know Vaccination Schedules?

Now that we’ve presented the information, you may be asking, “Why is it important to know these timelines?” Two big parts of being a nurse are public health and education. Vaccinations play a huge role in both of these things. By understanding the recommended schedule, you can help your patients make educated decisions for themselves and their families, as well as protect the public by decreasing the occurrence of preventable diseases.

Recommended Immunization Schedule

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