Tdap vaccine required for Illinois preteens, teens

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — It’s time for parents to think about back-to-school shots for their children, and that includes high school students.

The Illinois Department of Public Health says there’s a new requirement this year. All students in grades six through 12 are now required to show proof of receiving one Tdap (TEE’-dap) vaccine.

Tdap protects against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis, commonly known as whooping cough.

Last year, only sixth- and ninth-grade students needed to receive the Tdap vaccine. Students must either show proof of having received one Tdap vaccination, must have an appointment to get it or have an approved medical or religious exemption on file.

Students who received the Tdap immunization last year, or any time since 2005, can show proof of having received the vaccine.

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