Children with Chronic Conditions
Immunizations are the best way to protect children against vaccine-preventable diseases and the spread of these diseases. Immunization is especially important for children with chronic conditions, who are more likely to experience complications from infectious diseases – including more severe and long-term illness, hospitalization, and even death.
Listed below are some of the immunization recommendations for children with certain chronic conditions. If you have a child with a chronic health condition, talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist or local public health office about your child’s immunization status and the immunizations that may be recommended for them.
Chronic Heart Disease
Children with chronic heart disease are at higher risk of experiencing serious complications from viral and bacterial infections that can worsen their heart condition and lead to hospitalization.
Those with chronic heart disease are recommended to receive their routine childhood immunizations, in addition to the influenza (flu) vaccine every year and the pneumococcal vaccine.
Chronic Lung Disease
Children with chronic lung disease, including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cystic fibrosis, or other disorders that affect the lungs are at increased risk for complications from influenza and pneumococcal infection. People with chronic lung diseases have sensitive airways which can worsen from infection, no matter how well controlled or mild the symptoms are.
Children with chronic lung disease are recommended to receive their routine childhood immunizations, in addition to the influenza vaccine each year and the pneumococcal vaccine.
Children with diabetes often have complications from diabetes that can affect their immune system’s ability to fight off infection – even those with well-managed diabetes. This puts these individuals at greater risk for complication and hospitalization from infection.
Children with diabetes are recommended to receive their routine childhood immunizations, in addition to the influenza vaccine each year and the pneumococcal vaccine.
Chronic Liver Disease
Children with chronic liver disease experience impaired immune function that can limit their ability to fight off infection and can increase the risk of complication and hospitalization.
Children with chronic liver disease are recommended to receive their routine childhood immunizations and the influenza vaccine every year. In addition to routine immunizations, the pneumococcal and the hepatitis A and B vaccines are recommended.
Chronic Kidney Disease
Children with chronic kidney disease or those who are undergoing dialysis are at increased risk of infection that can lead to complications and hospitalization from vaccine-preventable diseases.
Children with kidney disease or those undergoing dialysis are recommended to receive their routine childhood immunizations and the influenza vaccine every year. In addition to the routine immunizations, the hepatitis B and the pneumococcal vaccines are recommended.