Your Baby’s Immunization Schedule
It’s what every parent dreads—vaccination day. We know that it’s not pleasant for your little one or you, but the vaccination schedule listed in this article is vitally important to your baby’s health. They’ve been proven to reduce the occurrence of infectious diseases worldwide.
So while there will be tears and a little discomfort, it will be short-lived. Here’s how you can give your baby the best start in life.
Please note that our vaccination schedule at Welwitschia Hospital follows recommendations made by the World Health Organization.
- OPV – Oral Polio Vaccine
- BCG – Bacille Calmette-Guérin or the Tuberculosis Vaccine
- Heb B – Hepatitis B Vaccine
- IPV DTaP – Diphtheria, Tetanus, Acellular Pertussis and Inactivated Polio Vaccine
- Hib – Haemophilus Influenzae type B
- PCV – Pneumococcal Conjugated Vaccine
- RV- Rotavirus Vaccine
- Measles Vaccine
- Heb A – Hepatitis A Vaccine
- Chickenpox (Varicella) Vaccine
- MMR – Measles, Mumps and Rubella
- HPV – Human Papillomavirus Vaccine
Shortly after your newborn’s arrival, a hospital nursing sister will administer the following vaccines:
- OPV – The polio vaccine is given in a liquid form. Polio causes muscle weakness and paralysis and is entirely preventable. It’s transmitted by drinking contaminated water or coming into contact with someone who has the disease.
- BCG – This is an injection administered in the upper right arm. Your baby’s arm might be a little sore and may develop swelling or a puss-like blister around the injection site. Don’t try to squeeze it. Simply leave it alone, and it will disappear in a couple of months.
- Hep B – This needs to be administered within 24 hours of birth. It helps to prevent Hepatitis B, a highly contagious liver disease.
- IPV DTaP/ Hib Hep B – Also known as a six-in-one vaccination, this combination vaccine allows us to give your baby greater protection from various illnesses without having to administer multiple injections. This is the first dose in a series.
- PCV –This is the first dose in a series.
- RV –This is the first dose in a series.
These vaccines and the subsequent follow-up doses are injected into your baby’s upper leg.
- IPV DTaP/ Hib Hep B – The second dose in a series.
- PCV – The second dose in a series.
- RV – The second dose in a series.
- IPV DTaP/ Hib Hep B – The third dose in a series.
- PCV – The third dose in a series.
Measles – Also known as Rubeola, this highly contagious respiratory infection commonly occurs in children under five years of age and can be very serious. It presents as a skin rash across the body, a runny nose, cough, fever and sore throat. There is no established treatment for measles once infected, which is why it’s so important to get the vaccine. This is the first injection since those administered at birth to be given in your child’s arm.
- Hep A – One of the most commonly spread diseases, Hepatitis A, causes an infection in the liver. It’s spread by eating and drinking contaminated food. It can result in low fever, nausea, fatigue, loss of appetite, and abdominal pain. Although it does clear up on its own, it can take a few months for the infection to work its way out of the system.
- Chickenpox – While not a life-threatening disease, chickenpox can be unpleasant for children and is highly contagious. The spots become inflamed and itchy, and if scratched, can leave pock-like sores. Each child experiences the disease differently. Some might have a few spots. Other’s might be covered entirely in red spots. We still recommend you bring your little one to be vaccinated against it.
- Chickenpox – This is a booster that should be given at least 6 weeks apart from the first dose.
- IPV DTaP/ Hib Hep B – This is the fourth dose in the series.
- PCV – This is the fourth dose in the series.
- Hep A – This is the second dose in the series.
- MMR – Measles, Mumps and Rubella. We already covered Measles, but Mumps is a particularly nasty infection. It can cause swelling of the ovaries or testicles, headaches, fever, swollen salivary glands, loss of appetite, fatigue, and muscle aches. In severe cases, it can cause inflammation of the brain, meningitis and death. Rubella, also known as German Measles, is similar to the flu. It causes a sore throat, headache, fever, rash, and itchy eyes. The vaccine protects against all of these infections. But a common side effect of the vaccine is a sore arm, fever, pain in the joints, but this is short-lived, and a mild rash.
- IPV DTaP– This is a booster dose.
- MMR – This is a booster dose
- Hep B – This is a booster dose.
- IPV DTaP – booster dose
- HPV – The HPV vaccine helps to prevent cervical cancer.
- From the age of 9 to and including 14 years of age at the time of the first injection – 2 doses. Second dose between 5 and 13 months after first dose.
- From 15 years and above – 3 dose schedule at 0, 1, 6 months.
Frequently Asked Questions
If I miss a recommended vaccine, can I catch it up?
It’s vital that you vaccinate your child on time. If you do miss a scheduled vaccine, you can catch it up. Each situation is unique and needs to be considered individually. The nursing sister will evaluate how many doses need to be given if the vaccine is still required or safe for the child’s age.
Does my child have to have all the doses in a series?
A single dose of a live vaccine typically primes your child’s immune system. We give additional doses to ensure added protection. Inactivated vaccines require three doses to prime the immune system. Boosters are administered to maintain immunity.
If I miss a dose, do I have to restart the schedule?
No. We can still administer the subsequent doses, but they will be given in the correct intervals, and it can take time before your child achieves optimal immunity.
Does the MMR vaccine cause autism?
There is no concrete evidence that the MMR vaccine leads to autism.
If my child is ill, should they still get the vaccine?
It’s best to wait until your child is healthy before getting the scheduled vaccine. Remember, some children do experience minor flu-like symptoms. If they are already unwell, this could make them very ill.
Can my child get vaccinated if they’re on an antibiotic?
It’s best to wait until your child finishes their course of antibiotics. The medicine would interfere with the live vaccine affecting your child’s immunity against that infection.
Book You Immunization @ Welwitschia Hospitals Clinic
Give your child the best start in life. Vaccines protect against multiple childhood and adult diseases, so get them vaccinated. If you want to make a booking for a vaccine, have questions or concerns, please reach out to our Clinic on +264 64 218 953.
The clinic at Welwitschia Hospital also provides travel vaccines & pap smears and will gladly assist with any other vaccination queries you might have.
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- A-Z Of Breastfeeding Your Newborn
- Pregnancy Do’s and Don’ts, the Facts
- Preparing for birth during COVID-19
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