Illinois state officials are urging parents to ensure their children's immunizations are updated before school starts next month.
Officials for the Illinois State Board of Education and Department of Public Health say August is "National Immunization Awareness Month."
Public Health Director Dr. Damon Arnold says vaccines are a cost-effective way to prevent disease and death.
Vaccines can prevent such diseases as polio, measles, mumps, whooping cough and diphtheria that cause children to miss school and parents to miss work.
In serious cases such illnesses can be fatal.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say children get most immunizations before age 2. But kids ages 4 to 6 and entering kindergarten needs several booster shots.
Boosters might be necessary between ages 12 and 15.
Illinois Department of Public Health: