IH: Reason to follow immunization schedule

Prime your baby's immune system to tackle diseases right about when they will be exposed to them, plus it means fewer shots.

Heather Way


Have you heard of parents choosing to “design” their child’s immunization schedule? This may include waiting until their child is older before getting their immunizations (shots) and/or choosing some of the recommended vaccines but not all of them.

These parents may believe that by designing a different immunization schedule, they are doing what is best for their child. However, these decisions are not supported by research and are not recommended by health-care immunizers. They may put your child at risk.

It is very important that children receive all recommended shots on time.

The B.C. Immunization Schedule is based on scientific research. It is designed to protect children from getting diseases when they are most vulnerable.

If we delay giving children their shots on time, we leave them exposed longer to illnesses which can make them very sick.

Timing is important.

Following the recommended schedule gives the right protection at the right time.

Some vaccines should be given starting at two months of age because that is when babies are most at risk.

Some vaccines, such as whooping cough (pertussis), are given as a series over time in order to build the best protection.

Why do some parents choose to delay or alter immunization schedules? They may worry their baby’s immune system cannot handle more than one shot at a time. Fortunately, there is no need to worry. Babies are exposed to many germs in the environment and their bodies are able to handle this exposure. The same happens with vaccines. A baby can receive many vaccines at the same time without any problems.

Baby’s immune system

Some parents may wonder if a baby’s body can handle all those vaccines without “using up” their immune system.

You bet they can. More immune cells are being made all the time. When you give your baby their shots on time, the immune system gets primed to fight off those diseases which might come along.

And remember, it’s perfectly OK for your child to receive several shots at the same appointment. Getting all vaccines for which your child is eligible, both in their combination form and at the same appointment is just as effective as giving separate shots over more appointments.

Plus, it means fewer needles for your child and that’s always a good thing.

Do the right thing: Immunize on schedule

Every parent wants to do what’s best for their child. So save designers for your wardrobe and not your child’s immunization schedule. Get all your child’s shots on time. If you have any questions about the B.C. Immunization Schedule or your child’s shots, speak with a public health nurse, your family doctor or nurse practitioner.

Heather Way is a knowledge coordinator with Interior Health’s immunization and communicable disease program.


Just Posted

Kelowna and Lake Country popular stories from the week

The Capital News and Calendar highlight popular stories every Saturday afternoon

Cook kicks off byelection campaign in West Kelowna

The campaign office will be open seven days a week in the Westbank Shopping Centre

Kelowna students complete D.A.R.E. program

Students at Heritage Christian School received their certificates Friday

Dual-credit film program approved for Central Okanagan students

The Central Okanagan Public Schools is developing a program with the Vancouver Film School

Kelowna youth wellness centre receives $10,000 donation

The Foundry received a cheque from the Rotary Club of Kelowna Sunrise Friday

Disappointing turnout for Kelowna women’s march

The Kelowna Women’s March on Washington was held Saturday, Jan. 20

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

B.C. woman who forged husband’s will gets house arrest

Princeton Judge says Odelle Simmons did not benefit from her crime

Liberals’ 2-year infrastructure plan set to take 5: documents

Government says 793 projects totalling $1.8 billion in federal funds have been granted extensions

Workers shouldn’t be used as ‘pawns’ in minimum wage fight: Wynne

Comments from Kathleen Wynne after demonstrators rallied outside Tim Hortons locations across Canada

Women’s movement has come a long way since march on Washington: Activists

Vancouver one of several cities hosting event on anniversary of historic Women’s March on Washington

John ‘Chick’ Webster, believed to be oldest living former NHL player, dies

Webster died Thursday at his home in Mattawa, Ont., where he had resided since 1969

Most Read