Why your child needs to keep up with vaccinations


Photo of masked, young woman in doctor's office setting wearing headscarf, blouse and sweater vest holding young female child on lap. A female doctor with mask and face shield is applying band aid to child's upper arm.

The health and well-being of our children is something we all care about. One of the most effective ways to protect them from serious sickness and disease is through vaccines.

Why is it so important to keep your child’s vaccinations up to date?

Vaccines protect infants and young children

Vaccines protect children from sickness that can cause long-term health problems. These health problems can include blindness, hearing loss, brain damage and even death. It is especially easy for infants and young children to get very sick from certain diseases, even from the flu. Getting very sick can cause health issues in the future. Children under 5 years of age who get the flu are much more likely than adults to have to go to the hospital.

Vaccines protect children when they need it

There is a vaccine schedule that maps out what vaccine your child needs and when. The schedule is based on how your child’s immune system responds to vaccines at different ages. It is also based on how likely your child will be exposed to a certain disease. Getting your child vaccinated at the right time helps protect them from preventable diseases.

We have an infant wellness map to help you keep up with the vaccines your baby needs from ages 0-12 months. It’s pocket-size so you can take it with you to your baby’s doctor visits. To get an infant wellness map, call our Health Education Line at 800-700-3874, ext. 5580 (TTY: Dial 711).

Get gift cards totaling up to $250 by making sure your child is up to date with vaccines and checkups from ages 0-21.​ Check out our member page for more details.

Vaccines also protect others

Children who are not vaccinated can spread diseases to others, like newborns, older adults and people with chronic health issues. Keeping your child’s vaccinations up to date protects your child and those around them.

Vaccines can prevent lost wages from being sick

When a child gets sick, parents and guardians may have to take time off work to care for them. Time off work can lead to lost income and added stress on the family. Older children may miss out on school, sports and other activities because they can’t be around other people.

Talk to your child’s doctor about what vaccines your child needs. Keeping your child up to date with vaccines adds protection as they grow and helps them be healthy.

At the Alliance, our focus is “healthy people, healthy communities.” That starts with helping our members have the information and access to care they need to be the healthiest they can be.

About the contributor:

Kristin Rath

Kristin Rath is a Communications Content Specialist at Central California Alliance for Health (the Alliance). She works with the health plan’s experts to write on a wide range of health care and wellness topics, including checkups, vaccines, behavioral health and food security. Kristin has been with the Alliance since 2019. She holds Master of Arts and Master of Science degrees in communications.

Written in collaboration with subject matter expert: Hilary Gillette-Walch, Clinical Decision Quality Manager