May 4, 2009
Health Department urges vaccination boosters, unvaccinated to stay home from school
(Ogden, UT) The Weber-Morgan Health Department has reported 28 new cases of chickenpox at Valley Elementary in Huntsville in recent weeks and officials are encouraging parents to keep their children’s vaccination schedules current.
Health officials remind parents that state law requires all Utah school children to receive chickenpox vaccinations before they enter kindergarten. As required by law, the health department may be asking unvaccinated students to stay home if they have been exposed.
Many of the students had not received recommended booster vaccines and those who were previously vaccinated are experiencing much milder symptoms than those who have not been immunized.
“Vaccinated children may still experience a very mild form of the disease because they did not develop adequate immunity against the virus,” says Gary House, director of the Weber-Morgan Health Department. “This is why we recommend vaccination boosters for added protection.”
Chickenpox is a highly contagious disease that typically peaks in winter and early spring. Symptoms include fever, runny nose and painful or itchy skin lesions. Individuals are infectious before the symptoms become apparent and can spread the disease until the lesions have scabbed over.
“Individuals who have not been vaccinated subject themselves to a higher risk of contracting the disease and suffering potentially life-threatening complications,” House says.
For more information or to be vaccinated, contact your primary care physician or the Weber-Morgan Health Department, 801-399-7252. Cost is about $85 and is covered by most insurance plans. Weber-Morgan Health Department also participates in the Vaccines for Children, a federally funded program for children under 18 who are uninsured or who qualify for the state’s CHIP or Medicaid or are of American Indian descent.
and from the Salt Lake Tribune
Chickenpox vexing students in Huntsville -