Children should be vaccinated as close as possible to the scheduled milestones. This is because each dose of every vaccine given to babies and children is carefully chosen to provide them with the earliest protection.
On time vaccination will give your child the best protection against serious diseases. If you delay vaccinations, your child will be unprotected for longer than necessary – often at an age when disease is most common or most serious.
For more information about the schedule, visit the Australian Department of Health: Why is the National Immunisation Program schedule the way it is?
Don't delay vaccination because of minor illness
Wanting to delaying vaccination when your little one is feeling off colour is a normal response. But the truth is, even if they have a runny nose or slight cold they can still receive their shot. Timely vaccination is the best way to protect your child from serious diseases.
If your child has a minor illness and does not have a fever of 38.5°C or more, they can be vaccinated safely and effectively.
Speak with your doctor or health clinic staff if you are unsure.
For more information medical conditions influencing vaccination, visit the Australian Department of Health: Who can be immunised?
Vaccines are safe and effective
All vaccines given to Australian children are carefully tested to ensure they are safe and effective. Before being registered for use by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), vaccines must pass three phases of clinical trials that test the vaccine’s safety, ability to effectively stimulate immune responses and whether there are any side effects.
The benefits of immunisation far outweigh any risks. However, like other medicines, a vaccine can sometimes cause side effects. These are usually mild and short-lasting and involve pain, swelling and redness at the injection site. Serious side effects are very rare.
For more information about how vaccines are tested, visit the Australian Department of Health: How are vaccines shown to be safe?
You will need to provide records of your child’s immunisations for child care, preschool and for school enrolment. Contact the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) on 1800 653 809 to obtain an AIR Immunisation History Statement.
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