Yukon Immunization Schedule:

Dear Parents, you are being lied to (from the Violent Metaphors blog):

There’s an app for that… CANImmunize has created a free app that helps you keep track of your immunization records and appointments, access immunization schedules, receive alerts about disease outbreaks in your area and  access evidence-based and expert-reviewed information about immunizations for children, adults and travelers.

Busting Anti-Vaccine Myths provides articles, videos and interviews on topics of interest to nurse practitioners. The site collates 100 of the best sites on the real science of immunization

A Parent’s Guide to Vaccination

“Your baby deserves the best health and that includes protection from 13 vaccine-preventable diseases. You help protect your child not just the first time, but every time you keep your child’s immunizations up-to-date. Immunization has saved the lives of more babies and children than any other medical intervention in the last 50 years. It’s safe, it’s simple — and it works!” Public Health Agency of Canada 

Canadian Immunization Guide From the Public Health Agency of Canada 

Institut national de santé publique (Québec):

Teens, Meet Vaccines -

Not Just for Kids: An Adult Guide to Vaccination -

On March 28, 2012, the following letter to the editor was published in the Whitehorse Star:

Vaccinations have saved many lives globally

As health care professionals, we have seen first-hand the positive impact immunizations have in protecting society against diseases that once decimated populations.

In considering the safety of vaccines, it is important to look at both risks and benefits.

If there were no benefit from a vaccine, even one serious side effect in a million doses could not be justified.

If there were no vaccines, however, there would be many more cases of disease, more serious side effects from disease, and more deaths.

The examples from countries that have stopped or decreased their immunization programs have illustrated this fact many times in recent years.

The diseases we can prevent with vaccines can lead to pneumonia, deafness, brain damage, heart problems, blindness and paralysis in children who are not protected.

We are fortunate in Canada to have vaccines for diseases that still kill and disable children throughout the world every day. The risks of not getting immunized are a lot greater than any risk of immunization itself.

Nationally and internationally, diseases return quickly when fewer people are immunized or when individuals are not fully immunized:

  • A 2011 outbreak of measles in Quebec resulted in 776 confirmed cases. The majority of the 776 cases were in young people between age 10 and 19; one case out of every nine cases required hospitalization.
  • In the U.S., California saw 9,154 cases of pertussis the highest in 52 years in 2010 and 2,937 cases in 2011. Several children died in these outbreaks.
  • A large outbreak of rubella (German measles) occurred in Nebraska in 1999. All 83 cases in this outbreak involved adults who had not been immunized. Most of them came from countries where rubella immunization is not routine. The outbreak spread from a meat-packing plant to the general community, including several pregnant women and two day care centres.
  • The greatest danger from rubella is to infants, who may be born with congenital rubella syndrome if their mothers are infected during pregnancy.
  • In 1994, there were 5,000 deaths due to diphtheria in Russia after the organized immunization system was suspended. Previously, Russia (like Canada) had had only a few cases of diphtheria each year and no deaths. Diphtheria toxoid came into routine use in the 1930s, but even today, diphtheria remains a severe disease. About one person in 10 with diphtheria still dies in spite of medical treatment.

These examples clearly demonstrate that unless a disease has been eradicated, there is always a real risk that a small outbreak can turn into a large epidemic if most of the community is not protected.

The only disease that has been entirely eliminated in the world so far is smallpox.

Some diseases, such as tetanus, are caused by bacteria that live naturally in the soil. The risk of diseases like tetanus will never disappear, so continued immunization is important.

We believe that individuals need to be aware of research and discuss questions and concerns with their health care providers and make an informed decision.

Below are credible sources where information can be found.

Dr. Sally Macdonald
Acting Chief Medical Officer of Health

Lori Strudwick, MN RN
Chair, Territorial Advisory Committee on Immunization

Community Nursing
Hazel Booth, RN
Clinical Manager
Yukon Communicable Disease Control