Immunization Policy 2016
The physicians, nurse practitioners and staff at MD Pediatric Associates have always endeavored to be good partners with our patients and families. We strive to provide information to help parents make the right decisions for each child’s health. As your child’s medical home, we bring our medical expertise and you bring knowledge of your child and your daily experience to these healthcare decisions. We recommend fully immunizing children, based upon the most current and complete scientific data available which supports the development of immunizations as one of the most significant medical advancements of the 20th century. Today, thanks to the development and widespread use of vaccines, the frequency of vaccine-preventable illnesses has been vastly reduced, and in some cases nearly eliminated. As a result the occurrence of debilitating side-effects or death from illnesses such as meningitis has been greatly reduced in children over the past thirty years. Unfortunately, many parents may be confused about the value and safety of vaccines due to misinformation. If you have any questions or concerns about vaccine safety, please discuss your concerns with your child’s healthcare provider.
Children who are unimmunized may pose a significant risk to some of the most vulnerable patients in our practice including newborns, children who are immune-compromised due to cancer or other chronic illness, pregnant mothers or elderly relatives. We do not want to place these vulnerable populations at risk of contracting vaccine-preventable illnesses. Therefore, after January 1, 2016, we will no longer accept any new patients to our practice who choose not to vaccinate. Our primary concern is the health of all of our patients and their families.
We encourage our current families with unvaccinated children to talk about immunization concerns with your provider and to begin the catch-up schedule for vaccinations. Families who have not started this catch-up immunization process by June 1st, 2016 will be asked to transfer to another healthcare practice. We will continue to provide healthcare to those children with medical conditions that preclude vaccinations such as documented allergic reactions or certain neurologic/neuromuscular disorders. If your child is currently on an altered vaccination schedule at MD Pediatrics, we will continue as your healthcare provider with the intention of full immunization status by 5 years of age.
We understand that our new policy will not be acceptable to some of our current families including some with whom we have long standing and trusting relationships. We hope that all our current families will consider the choice to immunize to be an appropriate one for their children but should your family decline to immunize, there will be no fees for a transfer of your child’s records to a new medical home.
Below you will find the pediatric immunization schedule and websites that offer information about immunizations at all ages.