Childhood Immunisations

Important Information for Parents

Childhood immunisations, also known as vaccinations or shots, are a series of vaccines that are given to children at different stages of their development to protect them against a range of infectious diseases. These vaccines are made from either weakened or dead bacteria or viruses, or from fragments of these microorganisms, which stimulate the body’s immune system to produce an immune response that protects against future infections.

In Australia, childhood immunisations are recommended and funded by the National Immunisation Program (NIP), which provides free vaccines to all children under the age of 19. The NIP includes vaccines for diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), hepatitis B, polio, and meningococcal disease.

The benefits of childhood immunisations are numerous. Firstly, they protect children against potentially serious and even life-threatening diseases, reducing the risk of complications, hospitalisation, and death. Secondly, they also protect the wider community by reducing the spread of infectious diseases and contributing to herd immunity. Finally, childhood immunisations are cost-effective, as they reduce the need for medical treatment and associated costs.

Overall, childhood immunisations are a safe and effective way to protect children against a range of infectious diseases, and they are an important part of promoting the health and wellbeing of children in Australia. It is important for parents and caregivers to ensure that their children receive the recommended vaccinations at the appropriate times to ensure they receive the full benefits of immunisation.

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