Back-to-school time means time to make sure the kids are up-to-date on their vaccines

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HOUSTON—  We're in the midst of national immunization awareness month and with the kiddos going back to school, this is the perfect time to make sure they're up to date. Call it preventative care.

The Houston Health Department began the week actually giving away shots— for free!

"It`s important just to make sure that your children are protected from different illnesses," Nursing Chief Tracy Fletcher-Davies said.

The Children's Museum also offers free vaccinations every Thursday evening this month from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. for the first 150 kids.

For children starting Kindergarten and Pre-K, pediatrician Dr. Sangeeta Agrawala recommends several.

"Their tetanus shots, their polio shots, measles, mumps rubella shots and also chicken pox shots," Agrawala said.

For ages 11 and 12,  in addition to the tetanus booster and meningitis shot, Agrawala recommends the HPV vaccine to prevent cervical cancer and genital warts.

"Most parents think, oh...their children are not going to be sexually active so they are protected. But, we never know," Agrawala said.

Flu shots are also on the "must-have" list. Check with your pediatrician or the Houston Health Department for availability.

Doctors orders!