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Prevention Guidelines, Birth to Age 2

Screening tests and vaccines are an important part of managing your child's health. Below are guidelines for these, for children from birth to age 2. Talk with your child's healthcare provider to make sure your child is up to date on what he or she needs.


Who needs it

How often

APGAR (a test to check the overall health of a baby right after birth)

Breathing, color, heart rate, muscle tone, and reflexes are checked

All newborns

1 and 5 minutes after birth

Lead level

All children in this age group

Risk assessment of lead exposure at ages 6, 9, 12, 18, and 24 months. Blood testing advised if risk assessment is high.

Newborn screenings (a series of tests for metabolic, endocrine, hemoglobin, and other conditions; tests may vary by state)

Conditions tested for include hearing loss, congenital heart disease, congenital hypothyroidism, phenylketonuria, sickle cell disease, cystic fibrosis, and severe immunodeficiency

All newborns; talk with your healthcare provider about the tests in your state

Testing when newborn is at least 24 hours old; done before discharge from the hospital. Hearing screening done before infant is 1 month old.

Oral health

Children ages 6 months and up

Oral health exams at 6 and 9 months; risk assessment at 12, 18, and 24 months. Risk assessment for fluoride supplementation at 6, 9, 12, 18, and 24 months; oral fluoride supplementation for those with low fluoride levels in their water; fluoride varnish should be applied every 3 to 6 months once teeth are present.


Who needs it

How often

DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus, acellular pertussis)

All infants

At ages 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15 to 18 months

Chickenpox (varicella)

All infants who have not had chickenpox

Between ages 12 to 15 months

Haemophilus influenzae type b conjugate

All infants

3-dose series: At ages 2 4 months, and between 12 to 15 months

4-dose series: At ages 2, 4, 6 months and between 12 to 15 months

Hepatitis A vaccine

All infants

Between ages 12 to 23 months, with a second dose at least 6 months after the first dose

Hepatitis B vaccine

All infants

At birth, between ages 1 to 2 months, and then between 6 to 18 months

Inactivated poliovirus

All infants

At ages 2 months, 4 months, 6 to 18 months

Influenza (flu)

Children 6 months and older

At 6 months of age, and then once a year; children 6 months through 8 years need 2 doses separated by 4 weeks when vaccinated for the first time.

Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR)

All infants

First dose between ages 12 to 15 months

Pneumococcal conjugate (PCV13)

All infants

At ages 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, and between ages 12 to 15 months


All infants

2-dose series: At ages 2 and 4 months

3-dose series: At ages 2, 4, and 6 months

Online Medical Reviewer: Liora C Adler MD
Online Medical Reviewer: Maryann Foley RN BSN
Online Medical Reviewer: Rita Sather RN
Date Last Reviewed: 8/1/2020
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