Polio Vaccination: Information for Healthcare Professionals

Inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) is the only polio vaccine that has been given in the United States since 2000. It is given by shot in the arm or leg, depending on the person’s age. CDC recommends that all children get four doses of polio vaccine as part of the routine childhood vaccination schedule. Children who are unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated should complete a polio vaccine series.

Most adults residing in the United States are presumed to be protected against polio because they received routine childhood immunization and have only a small risk of exposure to poliovirus in the United States. Unless there are specific reasons to believe they were not vaccinated, most adults who were born and raised in the United States can assume they were vaccinated for polio. Polio vaccination has been part of the routine childhood immunization schedule in the United States for decades. Adults who received any childhood vaccines in the United States almost certainly were vaccinated for polio.

  • Adults who are known to be unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated should receive and complete the polio vaccination series with IPV.
  • Adults who are fully vaccinated but are at increased risk for exposure to poliovirus, including certain international travelers, laboratory workers, and healthcare workers, may receive a single lifetime booster dose of IPV.
You Call the Shots
You call the shots (YCTS)

You Call the Shots is an interactive, web-based immunization training course. It consists of a series of modules that discuss vaccine-preventable diseases and explain the latest recommendations for vaccine use. Each module provides learning opportunities, self-test practice questions, reference and resource materials, and an extensive glossary.

Pink Book

Pink Book The “Pink Book” contains the most comprehensive information on routinely used vaccines and the diseases they prevent.

Six reference appendices include: vaccine minimum ages and intervals, current and discontinued vaccines, vaccine contents, foreign vaccine terms, and more.

Chapter 18: Poliomyelitis.