Get your jab

2017-06-13 06:03
A nurse administers a measles shot.

A nurse administers a measles shot.

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Your child can be part of the worldwide eradication of measles.

This as the provincial health department embarks on a vaccination campaign as part of the efforts to eradicate this debilitating illness.

The campaign started yesterday (Monday) and will run until Friday 30 June. It is aimed at all children younger than five years old, even if your child’s immunisations are up to date.

The best manner in which to eradicate an infectious illness is to make sure that between 93% and 100% of people have immunity, says the department in a statement.

This is known as herd immunity, and works by ensuring that when an illness is released into a community, those people who are exposed are protected. This is because a large number of immunised individuals act as a collective group preventing an illness from spreading. The various immunisation campaigns usually form part of a worldwide initiative to help eradicate an illness.

The secret to the success of any campaign is excellent team work between parents or caregivers and local clinics or health services. This campaign offers parents an opportunity to ensure that their child forms part of the worldwide eradication of measles.

A consent form will be sent home with your child and parents need to sign and return the form to the school.

Those parents who wish to can visit their local clinic or private child care provider.

Even if your child was vaccinated during the February and March prevention campaign, they should receive a booster shot during this campaign.

The measles vaccine is safe as it is made of an inactive virus and other than some children experiencing mild symptoms, has no side effects.

The professional health teams that will be visiting crèches and pre-schools can only vaccinate those children whose parents have given consent.

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