When you get vaccinated you are not only protecting yourself, you're helping protect others by making it less likely you will acquire and spread a disease.
As a physician, I see the illnesses caused by vaccine-preventable diseases. No child should suffer from a disease that can be prevented by vaccines. I also see children who can't be immunized because of a medical condition such as cancer, and who rely on others around them to be immunized so the virus or bacteria does not spread. We all play an important role in preventing infections that we once feared.
For more than 200 years, vaccines have been saving lives around the world. When children get vaccinated against a disease, they build up their immunity, making them stronger and more resistant to that disease. Getting vaccinated helps their body make antibodies that fight specific diseases, giving their immune system a boost.
Conflict attacks the systems that support the routines of daily life. The result is that, during conflict, millions of children miss out on the basic vaccines they need to stay healthy and have a fair chance in life. Most often the children affected are the most vulnerable to disease.
Vaccines help protect our kids against several communicable diseases, many of which are life-threatening to our little people. Babies under two are especially at risk of many serious childhood illnesses that are completely preventable through immunization, so why are people not immunizing their kids? Because of fear.
Only two provinces require vaccines for school entry.
Annie Mae Braiden says her 10-week-old daughter has been in the pediatric intensive care unit at Victoria General Hospital for more than a month after contracting the disease.
The Alberta Health Services report notes that 101 people died in the province last year of flu-related causes, including 86 in hospitals.
Now that the flu season is coming to an end in Canada, many public health officials will be taking a look back to reflect on the year to see what went right and what went wrong. Upon closer inspection of the details, the problems deal more with unforeseen circumstances than error.
Very soon, people of all ages across Canada will roll up their sleeves for their flu shots. The vaccine is already available