Open Accessibility Menu

Dr. Muzna Atif Says Vaccinations are an Important Part of your Back-to-School Checklist

  • Category: Blog
  • Posted On:
Dr. Muzna Atif Says Vaccinations are an Important Part of your Back-to-School Checklist

As millions of children go back to school this month, there's excitement around picking new backpacks, seeing friends again, and enjoying the school year. However, according to a new study from the American Academy of Pediatrics, one out of six toddlers are not completing their vaccination schedule. Dr. Muzna Atif, pediatric hospitalist and medical director of inpatient pediatric hospitalist services at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center, says the number of children not completing their vaccination schedule is concerning.

“As a pediatrician, my job is to help children in my community grow healthy,” says Dr. Atif. “Within the first months of life, infants start a vaccination schedule that is important to follow to prevent complications from preventable illnesses,” says Dr. Atif.

Why Are Vaccinations Important?

Vaccines help protect infants and children from contagious diseases by allowing their immune systems to recognize and resist harmful diseases upon exposure. Over time a child's immunity builds and fights off infectious diseases. As more people get vaccinated, community immunity strengthens and helps protect infants too young to be immunized and immunocompromised individuals, whose ability to fight off infections is low.

Common Vaccine-Preventable Diseases

The recommended vaccination schedule prevents children from once common infectious diseases such as polio, whooping cough, chickenpox, measles, and more. These highly contagious spread through the air, direct contact with an infected person, contact with eyes, mouth and inside the nose. Because it takes time to build immunity, children are at higher risk for these diseases.

Are Vaccines Safe?

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) thoroughly researches, reviews and authorizes vaccines that have met rigorous safety process. Children who aren’t vaccinated are more likely to be harmed by the disease than the vaccine itself.

As the new school year starts, it’s crucial to follow the recommended guidelines for vaccination to give your child a good start,” says Dr. Atif. “If you’ve missed an appointment, talk to your pediatrician about getting on a plan to catch up. It’s never too late to protect your child and those around them.”

For more information about children's vaccinations or concerns, visit Children’s Services at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center or 909.865.9858.