New Guidelines Emphasize Timely Teen Vaccination

VIDEO: Dr. Richard Besser explains updated information regarding your childs health.
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ABC chief health and medical editor Dr. Richard Besser discussed the latest vaccination schedule updates released by the American Academy of Pediatrics today on "Good Morning America."

"The new vaccination schedule draws more importance to vaccinate teens," Besser said. "Even though our kids may have gotten a vaccine when they were young, we know that as we get older, protection wears off."

More frequent visits to the doctor make it easier for babies to get all of their recommended vaccines. But it's harder to keep up with vaccines as a child gets older, Besser said.

Here are the latest vaccine recommendations for all ages released by the American Academy of Pediatrics:

Flu vaccine: Most children aged 6 months to 8 years old should now recieve two doses of the flu vaccine, even if they received the H1N1 vaccine last year.

Pertussis vaccine: Children 7-10 not previously vaccinated against pertussis -- also known as whooping cough -- should get a single dose of the tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, or Tdap vaccine. Teens ages 13 to 18 who did not get the Tdap should get the vaccine, followed by the Td booster every 10 years after.

HPV vaccine: The HPV vaccine is now recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics for prevention of genital warts in females, but may also be administered in a three-dose series to boys aged 9 to 18.

Haemophilus influenza type b vaccine: Children older than 5 and adults who have sickle cell, leukemia or HIV, or have had a part of their spleen removed should recieve a single dose of this vaccine.

Hepatitis B vaccine: This vaccine is typically given right after birth. Catch-up vaccinations for children who miss the recommended birth dose should be given on a schedule of 0, 1, and 6 months. The third dose should be given no earlier than 24 weeks old. If your teen did not recieve the hepatitis B vaccine as a baby, they should receive a two-dose combination.

Pneumococcal vaccine: Any series begun with the older, 7-valent vaccine should be completed with the new 13-valent version. A single supplemental dose of the new vaccine is recommended for children who have completed the series using the old one.

Meningococcal vaccine: Adolescents should recieve the first vaccine before age 12, and then should receive a booster when they're between ages 16 to 18.

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