DOCTOR CALLING: A weekly column by the chairman of South Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group Kevin Hill
As we approach European Immunisation week, which runs from April 23 to 29, South Lincolnshire CCG is raising awareness of the need to immunise children.
The aim of the week is to increase vaccination coverage by raising awareness of the importance of immunisation to parents, carers and the families of children.
Vaccinations are an important step in protecting your child against a range of serious and potentially fatal diseases. Vaccinations are quick, safe and extremely effective.
Once the child has been vaccinated against a disease their body can fight it more effectively. If children are not vaccinated they will have an increased risk of catching the illness.
There will be some children who are unavoidably unprotected because:
• They cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons;
• They are too young to be vaccinated;
• They cannot get to the vaccination service;
• The vaccine does not work (though this is rare).
If more parents have their children vaccinated then more children in the community will be protected against an illness and this in turn lowers the chance of a disease breakout.
As health professionals we would encourage all parents to ensure that their children are being protected against a range of serious and potentially fatal diseases through the vaccinations offered at their local practice.
Although overall uptake of vaccines is good, some children in the population remain unprotected and we would encourage their parents to get them vaccinated.
A full list of the vaccinations offered to children together with more information about the benefits to parents and their children can be found at www.nhs.uk