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Vaccinations You Need and Why

Soldier gets influenza vaccination

1st Cavalry Division Sustainment Brigade/Sgt. Adam Erlewein

In this Article:

  • Keep your immunization records current in MEDPROS.
  • Make sure you have the eight mandatory vaccines.
  • Share any vaccination concerns with your medical health professional.

Since the Revolutionary War, Soldiers have been getting immunized to protect them from sickness and disease. Vaccinations help guard against illness and potential biological threats.

Keeping your immunization records current is important because it affects your medical readiness as a Soldier. Stay up-to-date on your vaccines so that you are always mission ready.

Required Vaccinations

As a Soldier in the Army National Guard, you are required to get vaccinated for the following:

  • Hepatitis A (HPA). Virus that causes liver disease and liver failure.
    • Administered: Two injections given at least six months apart, typically in early childhood.*
  • Hepatitis B (HB3). Disease that can lead to liver inflammation, even cirrhosis or liver cancer.
    • Administered: Three injections given over a period of six months, typically in early childhood.*
  • Flu (INJ). Virus that causes a highly contagious respiratory illness, which can lead to pneumonia.
    • Administered: Yearly between November and January through injection or nasal spray.
  • Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR). Viruses that can cause brain damage, deafness, sterility, or other defects.
    • Administered: One injection, typically when an infant, and a booster in early childhood.*
  • Meningococcal. Life-threatening bacterial disease known as meningitis that infects the lining of the brain and spinal cord and bloodstream.
    • Administered: One injection every five years.
  • Polio (IPV). Virus that causes serious illness and even paralysis.
    • Administered: Three injections given over a period of six months, typically when an infant.*
  • Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Whooping Cough (TDP or DTaP). Bacteria that can cause the inability to open the mouth or swallow, often known as lockjaw, breathing problems, respiratory infections, and heart failure.
    • Administered: One injection every 10 years. (Note: Female Soldiers should get one during every pregnancy.)
  • Chicken Pox and Shingles (VAR). Contagious virus that causes intense rashes and lesions of the skin.
    • Administered: Two injections, typically in early childhood.*

*If a Soldier does not have documented proof of receiving this vaccination as a child, he or she will be required to get at least one injection called a booster.

Based on your location and occupation or if you are being deployed, you may also be required to get additional vaccinations. Ask your Medical Readiness NCO for more information.

Tracking Your Vaccination Schedule

You can track your immunization, medical readiness, and mission readiness status at any time in the Medical Protection System (MEDPROS). Be sure to stay current with your vaccines to avoid a red (not deployable) status.

Getting Immunized

If you haven’t already received them, some vaccinations will be administered during basic combat training. Vaccinations, such as annual flu shots, are offered through base health centers, your medical health professional, or seasonally during drill weekends.

Immunization is mandatory. If you have a health condition (e.g., allergies, pregnancy, etc.) or religious reasons as to why you cannot be vaccinated, reach to your commander to discuss an exemption request or speak to your Medical Readiness NCO or medical health professional for more information.

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