Nova Scotia

Health Department urges families to vaccinate kids before school resumes

As parents prepare their children for the new school year, Nova Scotia's Department of Health and Wellness wants them to make sure part of that prep work includes ensuring their children's vaccinations are up to date.

Adults should also make sure their vaccinations are up to date

The Department of Health and Wellness says up to date vaccinations help protect children and families from serious illnesses. (Brenna Owen/CBC)

As parents prepare their children for the new school year, Nova Scotia's Department of Health and Wellness wants them to make sure part of that prep work includes ensuring their children's vaccinations are up to date.

Once school resumes, it's easy for children to spread diseases between themselves and their classmates, and eventually back to the adults they come into contact with.

Immunization helps protect children and the population as a whole from serious illnesses.

Vaccinations lower the risk of infection and help people develop immunity to whooping cough, measles and many other diseases, according to a provincial government news release.

This schedule shows the recommended vaccines for children up to six years of age. (N.S. Health Department)

Before they start school, children between the ages of four and six should receive a booster of the Tdap-IPV vaccine, which protects against:

  • Tetanus.
  • Diphtheria.
  • Whooping cough.
  • Polio.

Some children may also need a second dose of MMRV vaccine to protect against:

  • Measles.
  • Mumps.
  • Rubella.
  • Chickenpox.

Grade 7 students receive HPV, hepatitis B, meningococcal quadrivalent and Tdap vaccines at school-based clinics.

This schedule shows the recommended vaccines for Grade 7 students. (N.S. Health Department)

The Health Department said it's also important for parents and guardians to make sure their own vaccinations are current and that they keep a record of their family's vaccination history.

Adults who have not received two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine should also be vaccinated. Additionally, all adults need a booster dose against diphtheria and tetanus every 10 years. Some adults will also require a vaccination for pertussis.

How to find out what vaccines you need

A health-care provider can help families determine what vaccines are necessary to make sure everyone in a household is protected.

Those who don't have a health-care provider can call their local public health office to arrange immunizations, according to the Health Department.

There's also a mobile app called CANImmunize where people can get more information about vaccines and keep track of their immunization records.

MORE TOP STORIES

now