3. Who should get the vaccine and when?
Children Under 2 Years of Age
All healthy infants and toddlers should get 4 doses of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine:
- One dose at 2 months of age,
- One dose at 4 months of age,
- One dose at 6 months of age, and
- One dose at 12-15 months of age.
Children who miss the first dose at 2 months should still get the vaccine. Ask your health care provider for details.
Children Between 2 and 5 Years of Age
Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine is recommended for children between 2 and 5 years of age who:
- have sickle cell disease,
- have a damaged spleen or no spleen,
- have HIV/AIDS,
- have other diseases that affect the immune system, such as diabetes or cancer, or
- take medications that affect the immune system, such as chemotherapy or steroids.
This vaccine should also be considered for all other children between 2 and 5 years of age, but particularly those who:
- are under 3 years of age,
- are of Alaska Native, American Indian or African American descent, or
- attend group child care.
The number of doses needed depends on the age that vaccination begins. Ask your health care provider for more details.
Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine may be given at the same time as other childhood vaccines.
4. Some children should not get pneumococcal conjugate vaccine or should wait.
Children should not get pneumococcal conjugate vaccine if they had a severe (life-threatening) allergic reaction to a previous dose of the vaccine.
Children who are moderately or severely ill at the time the shot is scheduled should usually wait until they recover before getting the vaccine. Children with minor illnesses, such as a cold, may be vaccinated.