Busy schedules, sick days, and other issues may interfere with your scheduled appointments and cause you to miss one of your child's immunizations. Before you panic, worry about getting another appointment, or worry about how far this will throw your child off schedule, consider the four things you need to know about the missed immunization and how to fix it.

Immunization Schedules are Not Set in Stone

There is a misconception that an immunization schedule is set in stone. The truth is, there are a number of variations to the traditional immunization schedule given to you when your baby gets their first shot. Some of these variations are done at the parent's request, such as the delayed vaccination schedule, while others are done to accommodate missed appointments.

Catch-up Schedules are Available

Catch-up schedules are available and deal with children who have missed multiple vaccinations and may be several months behind. These catch-up schedules work with the child's last vaccination and create a new schedule that will have them caught-up by the time they are 18 months old. This will leave them caught up with their vaccinations, except their yearly flu vaccine, until they begin public school.

Remembering Past Vaccination Dates Helps

If you don't remember the vaccination your child had last, but you do remember the date of the vaccination, then the doctor can work with you. The date, combined with the child's age, can help the doctor determine what may have been the last shot if they are not the ones that provided the vaccine. If you have the date and the location the vaccine was given, then the doctor can request the shot records and get your child back on track.

Health Departments Can Help

If you are unable to schedule an appointment with your traditional doctor, you can still go to the health department in your city or county for your child's vaccinations. They will be able to put your child on a schedule to ensure they receive all their vaccinations. They can also offer you appointment times that may fit your schedule better than your traditional doctor's office. All of your child's shot records can be forwarded to your doctor after the appointment.

When you miss an appointment for your child's vaccination, call the doctor as soon as possible. If you need shots for your child to enter day care, you may need to contact the health department and make a vaccination appointment. Immunization records can also be kept on a card in your wallet to help you remember the last shot that was given and when.