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Preteen Vaccine Week: March 1-7, 2020

HPV Vaccine Is Cancer Prevention. Get Your Preteens Vaccinated Today!

Preteen Vaccine Week (PVW) is almost here, and the County Health and Human Services Agency urges parents to make sure their adolescents are immunized against serious diseases, like pertussis (whooping cough), influenza, Human Papillomavirus (HPV), and meningitis.

Related County News Center Story: County Urging Parents to Vaccinate Adolescent Children.

An important focus of Preteen Vaccine Week is on increasing immunization against Human Papillomavirus (HPV). There are two types of HPV vaccine and both are highly effective at preventing common types of HPV that can lead to certain types of cancer, including cervical cancer, and mouth and throat cancers later in life.


Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine is recommended for both boys and girls at age 11 or 12 years to protect against HPV infections that can cause certain types of cervical and other cancers. It’s important to get this vaccine during preteen years because the body’s immune system responds better to the vaccine at these ages.

Did you know? Two doses of the HPV vaccine, instead of three, are recommended for 11-12-year-olds.

The HPV vaccine works well; a study shows that the infections prevented by the vaccine have dropped by 56 percent in teenage girls since it was introduced in 2006.

Influenza can strike anyone at any age, sometimes causing severe illness and hospitalization. There are several thousand deaths each year attributed to influenza. Everyone 6 months of age and older should get an annual flu vaccine. And since flu season often lasts into the spring, it’s not too late to get protected. For more information about flu, flu season and the flu vaccine, click here to visit the Immunization Program Influenza Season web page.

Pertussis (whooping cough) is a common respiratory disease in adolescents. It can cause severe coughing spells that lead to vomiting or broken ribs. Preteens suffering from whooping cough can be hospitalized and miss weeks of school. Older children and adults can inadvertently spread pertussis to babies who are too young to have completed the initial series of immuniz ations against it.

Meningococcal vaccine protects against meningococcal meningitis, a rare but serious infection which can strike even healthy teenagers. Ten percent of teens who get the disease die, and another 15 percent suffer long-term disability such as loss of limbs, deafness, nervous system problems or brain damage.

A preteen doctor visit is an opportunity for you to get your child these and other recommended immunizations and to discuss
health issues and concerns.

Preteen (11-12 years old) Vaccine Checklist:
Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis)--required for incoming 7th graders
Flu (every year)
Human Papillomavirus (HPV)— 2 or 3 dose series recommended for girls and boys
Any catch-up vaccines (such as a 2nd dose of MMR [measles, mumps, rubella] and chickenpox)

If you’re a parent of a preteen, make it a goal to schedule a visit with your doctor now, and urge other parents to do so.

Questions? Please visit www.GetImmunizedCA.org and www.ShotsforSchool.org. For true stories about people whose lives were affected by vaccine-preventable diseases, visit www.shotbyshot.org.

Learn more information about four important vaccines preteens and teens may need on CDC's Vaccines for Your Children: Protect Your Child at Every Age - 11 to 12 Years web page.

Immunization Comfort Tips for Parents of Preteens
Nobody enjoys shots, but they are necessary to help protect your preteen’s health. For a list of tips to help make your preteen less uncomfortable before, during and after shots, click here. (This sheet is from a previous Preteen Vaccine Week campaign, but its common-sense advice is just as helpful now as it was in previous years.)


Here is a list of some links to online and downloadable resources about preteen immunization:

True Stories of Families Affected by Vaccine-Preventable Diseases
Click here or on the title above to watch videos about why preteen vaccines are important.

Downloadable Preteen Immunization Materials

Vaccines For Your Preteen
(11" x 8.5" flyer for parents--English)

Vaccines For Your Preteen
(11" x 8.5" flyer for parents--Spanish)

Protect Their Health For The Years Ahead (8.5" x 11" flyer--double sided English and Spanish)

CDC HPV Vaccines for Preteens and Teens (8.5" x 11") English)

CDC HPV Vaccines for Preteens and Teens (8.5" x 11"--Spanish)

Vaccines for Teens and Preteens: Answers to Your Top Questions (8.5" x 11" flyer--English)

CDC Recommended Vaccine Schedule for Children 7-18 Years Old--English

CDC Recommended Vaccine Schedule for Children 7-18 Years Old--Spanish

More Preteen Vaccine Week 2020 Materials

Protect Their Health web banner

Protect Their Health web banner - 2

Preteen Vaccine Week Infographic 2020

HPV Vaccine Facts Graphic

Meningococcal Disease Graphic

Chickenpox Disease Graphic

PVW20-- Sample E-mail message

PVW20-- Drop-in article and blog post

PVW20-- Social Media Messages and E-mail signatures

Suggested Activities for Individuals and Organizations

Suggested Activities for Healthcare Providers