Immunizations

Immunizations against contagious diseases are provided by Health and Community Services to both children and adults who need them. The department does this both through providing vaccine purchased by the state to private medical providers, and by administering shots when they are needed.

Shots may be administered during routine visits or special clinics held by public health nurses at department offices, in schools, senior centers, and other public and private facilities on the larger islands. Vaccination is a simple and effective method of preventing certain diseases which may cause serious health problems.
 
 Recommended Immunizations for Children
 
Access your Family's Immunization Information online through the Washington State Department of Health MyIR (My Immunization Records) system.

Hepatitis B


Hepatitis B is a serious liver infection. It can be passed from an infected mother to her newborn during childbirth or from one person to another through blood or bodily fluids. The virus can cause live damage, liver cancer, and death. Hepatitis B vaccine will not protect against other forms of hepatitis.

Diphtheria, Tetanus, & Pertussis (DTP)


  • Diphtheria can cause paralysis, breathing and heart problems, and even death.
  • Pertussis (Whooping Cough) causes very long spells of coughing that make it hard for a child to eat, drink, or even breathe. It can cause lung problems, seizures, brain damage, and death.
  • Tetanus (Lockjaw) occurs when a tetanus germ enters a cut or wound. It can cause muscle spasms, breathing and heart problems and death.

Polio (OPV/IPV)


Polio can cause lifelong paralysis and death. There is no treatment for polio.

Haemophilus Influenzae Type B (Hib)


Hib disease can cause infection of the joints, skin, and blood; meningitis; brain damage, and even death. It is very dangerous to children under age five.

Measles, Mumps & Rubella (MMR)


  • Measles causes a high fever, rash and cold-like symptoms. It can lead to hearing loss, breathing and lung problems, brain damage, and even death. Measles spreads so easily that child who has not been immunized will most likely get it.
  • Mumps can cause headache, fever, and swelling of the cheeks and jaw. It can lead to hearing loss, meningitis (swelling of the brain and spinal cord), and brain damage.
  • Rubella (German Measles) causes a slight fever and a rash on the face and neck. It spreads from person to person very easily, through coughing, sneezing, or just talking. The greatest danger from rubella is to unborn babies. Pregnant women who get rubella can lose their babies, or have babies with severe birth defects.

Varicella Zoster Virus Vaccine (Var)


Varicella vaccine protects against chickenpox.

Recommended Immunizations for Adults


  • Influenza yearly for 65 years and older; under 65 with certain risk factors
  • Pneumonia one time only for 65 and older; under 65 with certain risk factors
  • Tetanus/Diphtheria booster every 10 years