National Immunization Awareness Week20 April 2012
FREDERICTON (GNB) – National Immunization Awareness Week is being observed from April 21 to 28, in conjunction with World Immunization Week.
The week serves as a reminder to the public to take some time to review their family's immunization status and take the necessary steps to ensure that loved ones are protected.
“Immunization is one of the best ways to protect the health of our population and avoid large-scale disease outbreaks,” said Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Eilish Cleary. “Over the past century, vaccines have saved more lives than any other health measure.”
In New Brunswick, routine immunization starts at birth and continues through all stages of life. Routine immunizations are available to all New Brunswickers, at no cost, through Public Health workers and other health care professionals such as physicians.
It is important that children receive all doses of recommended vaccines on time to ensure that they are fully protected. Infants are particularly vulnerable to many diseases that vaccines prevent since they have not yet developed adequate immunity to the bacteria and viruses that cause them. Immunization triggers their immune systems to be prepared to protect them from these serious diseases. It is also important for adults to get required booster shots to maintain immunity.
“The more people who are immunized, the lower the risk of exposure to potentially life-threatening illnesses,” said Cleary. “The current whooping cough (pertussis) outbreak is a reminder of the importance of immunizations. I encourage all New Brunswickers to work with their health care providers to ensure that their immunizations are up to date.”
More information on immunization is available on the Department of Health website.
● Department of Health: www.gnb.ca/health