Page 1 | 2Missionary Immunization Recommendations
Immunizations are not a requirement for missionary service, but those who decline or are unable to receive immunizations will serve in their home countries where their risk for contracting and transmitting the illness is not increased. Vaccines must be approved by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) in the United States or by an approved government agency internationally. Some vaccines contain live viruses and certain precautions apply. MMR, chickenpox, influenza by nasal spray, yellow fever, and shingles vaccines contain live viruses. They must be given on the same day, or separated by 28 days before another live virus vaccine can be given. For example, one could receive MMR, chickenpox and influenza vaccines on day 1, but would have to wait 28 days before receiving yellow fever. Each missionary should complete their immunizations BEFORE entering the MTC.
Immunizations Required for ALL Countries
Tetanus-Diphtheria-Pertussis: Tdap is the preferred vaccine. A primary series should have been received in childhood. A booster dose is required within five years.
Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR- live virus): This vaccine is not needed for those born before 1957. Two doses of the MMR vaccine should have been received, usually ages 12 months and 4-6 years. If only one dose was given, or if a person is unsure, a second dose should be given.
Hepatitis A: Hepatitis A is a two-dose series given on days 0, and 180 for lifetime protection. One dose protects for two years. Persons from developing countries may not need Hepatitis A vaccine.
Hepatitis B: Hepatitis B is a three-dose series given on a 0, 30, and 180 day schedule. At least two doses must be received before entering the MTC, but gives only 60-70% protection during the mission. If only two doses are given, a third dose should be given after the mission to complete the series.
Combined Hepatitis A/Hepatitis B (Twinrix): This vaccine is available and is approved for an accelerated schedule of 0, 7, and 21-30 days, with a 4th dose recommended after 12 months for lifetime protection. If a person has started Hepatitis A and/or Hepatitis B vaccines separately, Twinrix may be used to complete the immunization.
Influenza: Either injectable or inhaled (live virus) vaccine should given at least two weeks BEFORE entering the MTC during September through March in the northern hemisphere, and March through August in the southern hemisphere, to prevent epidemics under dormitory living conditions. Missionaries should be certain they receive the current vaccine.
In some locations, all vaccines may not be available, and immunizations may need to be completed during MTC training. An appropriate fee may be charged to the missionary or home stake for this service. With reduced duration of the MTC training period, every attempt should be made by the family and/or local priesthood to complete immunizations before entering the MTC.
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