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April 20–27, 2013 is National Infant Immunization Week

By Florida Department of Health, Office of Communications

April 19, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 19, 2013

Contact: Communications Office
(850) 245-4111

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH RECOGNIZES NATIONAL INFANT IMMUNIZATION WEEK

TALLAHASSEE—The Florida Department of Health (DOH) will recognize National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW) April 20–27, 2013. The Department reminds parents about the benefits of immunizing children against vaccine-preventable diseases. Immunizations are one of the most effective ways to protect infants and children from potentially serious diseases.

"In recent years vaccines have been very successful in helping to keep our children healthy," said Charles H. Alexander, Administrator of DOH's Immunization Section. "It is important to promote the recommended immunization schedule to protect infants and children by providing immunity early in life, before they are exposed to potentially life-threatening diseases."

One example of the seriousness of vaccine-preventable diseases is the increase in whooping cough (pertussis) cases or outbreaks that have been reported in a majority of states during 2012. Preliminary data from CDC reports more than 41,000 cases of whooping cough (pertussis) in the US, including 18 deaths, the highest number of pertussis cases in any one year in the US since 1955. Most of these deaths were in children younger than one year old. Provisional data indicate Florida had 577 cases of pertussis including one death in 2012.

For information about immunizations, please visit www.immunizeflorida.org or contact your county health department. Parents may also sign up at www.flshots.com to keep an online record of their child's immunizations.

DOH protects, promotes and improves the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

Follow us on Twitter at @HealthyFla and on Facebook. For news story ideas, interviews, videos and more from DOH Communications visit the DOH Online Newsroom.

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