Vaccine Schedule

What is a vaccine schedule?

An immunization schedule is a guideline for what vaccines are recommended and at what age specific vaccines are available.

Immunizing on schedule ensures your child gets the maximum possible protection from serious vaccine preventable diseases.

Did you know?

A less mature immune system and lack of physical development such as a smaller wind pipe means an infant or toddler is at much higher risk for serious complications from some vaccine preventable diseases. This is another reason why it is important to immunize on time.

The recommended immunization schedule usually starts with the first appointment at two months of age. However, publicly-funded immunization schedules may vary from province or territory

Talk to your health care provider or local health unit about the recommended immunization schedule that applies to you.

What is an immunization record?

At the first immunization appointment you will receive an immunization record for your child. Be sure to keep complete records of immunizations for you and your family.

An immunization record does more than record your child’s vaccinations; it can also be used to note any reactions your child may have had after receiving a vaccine. This is especially important when you and your family may not have a consistent health care provider.

A individual’s immunization record is usually requested when registering for day care, pre-school and for some post-secondary schools and work settings

If you are considering not having your child immunized, talk with your public health nurse or doctor first.

An immunization record will also indicate if and when there has been an interruption in the recommended schedule and why. There usually is no need to delay immunizations because of colds or other minor illnesses, but when in doubt, discuss your concerns first with your health care provider.

There also may be changes in the recommended immunization schedule for:
• Children & adults with inadequate immunization records
• Immunocompromised persons
• Infants born prematurely
• Patients in health care Institutions
• Persons new to Canada
• Pregnant & breastfeeding women
• Persons with neurologic or bleeding disorders
• Travelers

The need for immunizations does not end with childhood. Immunization is a lifelong commitment to keeping you and your family safe from vaccine preventable diseases.