For National Immunization Awareness Week, April 25- May 2, BCCDC has launched a campaign to remind British Columbians to keep up with scheduled immunizations during the COVID-19 pandemic to help prevent the spread of other infectious diseases.
Immunization saves millions of lives every year and is widely recognized as one of the world’s most successful and cost-effective health interventions.
The campaign includes social media and online ads, adapting the well-known “keep calm and carry on” slogan to “Keep calm and carry on immunizing.” It also builds off comments BC’s Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry made during a recent COVID-19 press briefing, encouraging parents of young children to continue their immunization programs.
“These are critical programs that we are preserving within our public health communities to make sure that young children in particular receive their basic immunizations and their childhood immunization,” said Dr. Henry on April 15. “Please be reassured that these services or still available to you and it is still incredibly important to protect our children from the other infectious diseases that we know can spread in our communities.”
Immunization is an essential service, and health units are continuing to hold immunization clinics during the COVID-19 pandemic and have made changes to help protect the safety of patients and staff.
"It's important, especially for babies to keep their vaccination schedules on time," said Dr. Monika Naus, medical director of BCCDC’ Communicable Diseases and Immunization Service. "Many babies will be vulnerable to infections like whooping cough, which are most serious when babies are young.”
Parents taking their children to get their vaccines should follow these guidelines:
- Only one adult should bring a child to the clinic (all other family members should stay home).
- Do not go to the clinic if you or your child are feeling ill and/or have any of the following symptoms:
- Runny nose
- Sore throat
- Shortness of breath or trouble breathing
- Diarrhea or vomiting
- Do not go to the clinic if you have been asked to quarantine because you have travelled outside of Canada or been in contact with or near someone with COVID-19.
Clinics looking for information on how to continue to deliver immunization services safely during COVID-19 can refer to this guidance