Chapter 7: Infectious Diseases
7.3 Respiratory Tract Infections
18.104.22.168: Influenza Immunizations for Children and Staff
To reduce the spread of influenza, early care and education programs should require annual immunization for influenza for children and staff.
- Ask families to provide written documentation of the current year’s influenza vaccine for children age 6 months and older. Children who turn 6 months during influenza season should be vaccinated and provide documentation to their early care and education program. Families who choose not to vaccinate their child(ren) against influenza should provide appropriate documentation for personal, religious, and/or medical reasons.
- Require all staff to receive an annual influenza vaccine before the start of or during the current influenza season.
- Encourage family members of children and staff to receive the annual influenza vaccine if they are eligible.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommend annual influenza vaccination for all people, age 6 months and older, preferably before the influenza season.1–3 Immunization remains effective throughout the influenza season, even when the seasonal vaccine is received early in the season. Infants who reach 6 months of age during influenza season should receive the vaccine if it is still recommended at that time.1–4 Vaccination of program staff, children, and other close contacts is particularly important to protect vulnerable adults/children who are at greater risk of complications from influenza. That includes children/adults with certain medical conditions and unvaccinated people. Children under 2 years old are more likely to have serious complications from influenza. Since children under 6 months are too young to receive the vaccine, staff, family members, and eligible children should be vaccinated to protect these younger infants.1,2 Immunization efforts should continue throughout the entire influenza season, since the season varies year to year.5 Influenza season typically starts in the fall or winter and can last through the spring.6
TYPE OF FACILITYCenter, Early Head Start, Head Start, Large Family Child Care Home, Small Family Child Care Home
RELATED STANDARDS22.214.171.124 Infectious Disease Outbreak Control
126.96.36.199 Immunization of Staff
188.8.131.52 Influenza Prevention Education
Committee on Infectious Diseases. Recommendations for prevention and control of influenza in children, 2020-2021. Pediatrics. 2020;146(4):e2020024588. doi:10.1542/peds.2020-024588
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Summary: ‘Prevention and control of seasonal influenza with vaccines: Recommendations of the advisory committee on immunization practices (ACIP)—United States, 2020-21.’ CDC.gov Web site. Last reviewed August 26, 2021. Accessed November 3, 2021. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/acip/summary/summary-recommendations.htm
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Who needs a flu vaccine. CDC.gov Web site. Last reviewed October 27, 2021. Accessed November 3, 2021. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/prevent/vaccinations.htm
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Flu & young children. CDC.gov Web site. Last reviewed October 25, 2021. Accessed November 3, 2021. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/highrisk/children.htm
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Misconceptions about seasonal flu and flu vaccines. CDC.gov Web site. Last reviewed October 25, 2021. Accessed November 3, 2021. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/prevent/misconceptions.htm
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Flu season. CDC.gov Web site. Last reviewed September 28, 2021. Accessed November 3, 2021. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/season/flu-season.htm
Content in the STANDARD was modified on 02/25/2022.