My children are now grown up, but I vividly remember some of the times when they were ill and wished there had been some way to keep them from getting sick.
One of my sons got rotavirus when he was 15 months old. He had severe diarrhea and vomiting that made him dehydrated. We ended up (like 15% of Canadian children who get this illness) in our local hospital emergency room for treatment. Even after this treatment, he was quite ill for another 3 days. There was no vaccine for rotavirus then.
My oldest son got chickenpox when he was seven years old. He was completely covered in spots, had a high fever and couldn’t sleep because of the itching. He was so sick that he missed more than two weeks of school. To this day, he has scars from some of the worst “pox”. A vaccine against chickenpox – which could have prevented this – came too late for him!
Ontario is expanding the publicly funded immunization program while saving families more money.
I was very excited to hear about changes to the childhood immunization schedule in Ontario. Starting August 2011, the province will be adding two new vaccines to the schedule. Our babies and children will now have better protection from serious infectious diseases. At the same time, more money stays in the family pocketbook.
- A rotavirus vaccine became available 5 years ago – but families had to pay for it. Now, babies up to 24 weeks old can get two free doses of the rotavirus vaccine from their family doctor.
- In 2004, chickenpox vaccine was added to our routine immunization schedule. Now, children will get a second dose of chickenpox vaccine so they are better protected. Some children will get this as a combined Measles-Mumps-Rubella-Varicella (MMRV) vaccine that will reduce the number of immunizations a child needs. Other children will get it as a “stand-alone” vaccine.
Share your experience:
To share your experience, or to get more information about your child’s immunizations, the new vaccines and schedule, you can talk to one of us directly:
- Leave us a comment below – we’d love your feedback
- Talk to us on Twitter: @haltonparents
- Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Dial 311 or 905-825-6000 for parenting information or to speak directly to a Public Health Nurse every Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
About this guest blogger:
Liz Bowers is a Registered Nurse and is currently the Supervisor of the Immunization Program for Health Protection Services at Halton Region. She has worked for Halton Region for the past 10 years. Prior to this, she worked in Community Health (in both British Columbia and Newfoundland) and in various hospital settings for over 22 years.