It’s almost back to school time. As you’re checking school supplies and uniforms off your list, be sure to check that your child is up to date on his or her vaccines.

Children don’t need vaccines updated every year, just at certain times. Below are vaccine requirements by age from the State of Tennessee Health Department.

Children enrolling in child care facilities, pre-school, pre-kindergarten

Infants entering child care facilities must be up to date at the time of enrollment and are required to provide an updated certificate after completing all of the required vaccines due no later than 18 months of age.

  • Hepatitis B (HBV)
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis (DTaP, or DT if appropriate)
  • Poliomyelitis (IPV or OPV)
  • Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib) - age younger than 5 years only
  • Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) - age younger than 5 years only
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella - 1 dose of each, normally given together as MMR
  • Varicella - 1 dose or credible history of disease
  • Hepatitis A - 1 dose, required by 18 months of age or older

Children enrolling in kindergarten

  • Hepatitis B (HBV)
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis (DTaP, or DT if appropriate)
  • Poliomyelitis (IPV or OPV) - final dose on or after the 4th birthday
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella - 2 doses of each, usually given together as MMR
  • Varicella - 2 doses or credible history of disease
  • Hepatitis A - total of 2 doses, spaced at least 6 - 18 months apart

All children entering 7th grade (including currently enrolled students)

  • Tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis booster (Tdap) - evidence of one Tdap dose given any time before 7th grade entry is required regardless of Td history
  • Varicella - 2 doses or credible history of disease

Children who are new enrollees in a TN school in grades other than kindergarten

  • Hepatitis B (HBV)
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis (DTaP, or DT if appropriate)
  • Poliomyelitis (IPV or OPV - final dose on or after the 4th birthday
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella - 2 doses of each, normally given together as MMR
  • Varicella - 2 doses or credible history of disease
  • New students entering grades other than 7th grade are not required to have Tdap

If you’re not sure if your child is up to date on his or her vaccines, call your pediatrician’s office or the Shelby County Health Department Immunization program (901-222-9331). You will need a copy of their shot record to enroll in school.

Vaccines are available at your pediatrician’s office or at Shelby County Health Department clinics. For more information about clinics and hours, visit the Health Department’s website.

More information related to vaccinations from Le Bonheur: