With the school year coming to a close, families are encouraged to use summer vacation time to get their child up-to-date on their routine vaccinations and health and wellness checks.
Regular health exams are vital to keeping kids healthy and up-to-date on their immunizations against many serious diseases. Meeting with your child’s doctor or health care specialist also provides families with a chance to ask questions about your child’s overall health and prevention.
The pandemic disrupted access for children to receive their routine health checks. Without these check-ups, children go without the necessary support and resources they and their families need to prevent, maintain and treat potential health issues. Health checks for children under the age of five dropped 75 percent in the last year nationwide. During this time, childhood vaccinations decreased significantly and so did important tests like the one for lead poisoning.
Lead is a toxic metal used in various products including paint, gasoline, plumbing pipes and fixtures, and tableware. According to a recent report published by the Santa Clara County Office of Education (SCCOE), lead continues to be a significant public health concern despite decades of research demonstrating the damaging effects of lead exposure on children. It is very important that children are tested for lead poisoning. Children are the most sensitive and vulnerable to developing behavioral disorders and long-term, irreversible health effects from elevated blood lead levels.
In addition to health check-ups, it is important for families to ensure their child is up to date on their routine vaccinations. Many child care settings and school enrollment have immunization requirements. Being up to date on your child’s immunization records is one way to set up your child for a successful start to the school year. Find a clinic to start your child’s school entry immunization process on the County of Santa Clara Public Health Department website. To learn more and health resources for children can be found on the enrollsantaclara.org website.