If you're sending your children back to school, the state wants to make sure they're up to date on their vaccinations.

Parents across Illinois are getting a reminder this month: Make sure your children are up to date on their shots.

The Illinois Department of Public Health and the Illinois State Board of Education are reminding parents there are new vaccination requirements this year.

Melaney Arnold, spokeswoman at IDPH, said students still have to have Illinois' traditional vaccines: Diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, haemophilus influenza Type B and hepatitis B.

But there are new vaccines for some students.

"What's new this year is that students entering grades two, seven, and 11 must show proof of receiving (the chickenpox vaccine)," Arnold said. "And students entering grade seven must show proof of a dose for meningococcal."

Arnold said the state has a program for parents who can't afford vaccinations.

Illinois law allows parents to opt-out of vaccinations for religious reasons, but Arnold is quick to say vaccinations don't just protect your child.

"Vaccinating your child protects not only your particular children," Arnold said. "It protects those around them."


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