Protecting kids from preventable diseases like measles, polio, and diphtheria

Apr 27, 2022

IMG 2104 Medical Mums

Brisbane North PHN is working to keep the local community protected from vaccine-preventable diseases with a public health campaign encouraging parents and carers to immunise their children.

Launched on the 24 April to coincide with World Immunisation Week, the PHN’s Medical Mums campaign asks parents and caregivers to keep up the great work, urging them not to forget about childhood immunisations.

The COVID-19 pandemic has negatively affected the routine immunisation of children around the world, leaving them at risk of serious diseases like measles and polio.

Revolutionised global health

Immunisations have been saving lives for over two centuries and are there to help protect ourselves and those around us. Without them, we are at risk of serious illness and disability from diseases like measles, meningococcal, polio and tetanus.

According to UNICEF, measles immunisations prevented over 23 million deaths worldwide between 2000 and 2018.

Instead of having their lives cut short from disease, immunisation made it possible for these 23 million people to continue their lives – to grow older and become a mum or dad or a grandparent. It’s enabled them to have jobs and careers, and spend precious time with loved ones.

However not everyone can get immunised – like infants who are too young or others with certain medical conditions – so they rely on the community to keep immunisations up to date to ensure they are also protected.

Six years of changing lives

Since its inception in 2016, the Medical Mums campaign has successfully increased childhood immunisation rates across the North Brisbane and Moreton Bay region.

Brisbane’s inner-city area, for instance, has seen the immunisation rates of five-year-olds rise from 88.5 per cent in 2016, to 94 per cent in 2021. The PHN hopes to increase this to the national target of 95 per cent in 2022.

The campaign is currently rolling out a series of short videos across digital platforms, sharing the voices and thoughts of parents who also work in the medical field.

It’s not too late to immunise

Immunisations are due at 2, 4, 6, 12, 18 months and four years old. Skipping or delaying an immunisation could leave a child unprotected and vulnerable to disease. However, if a child hasn’t been immunised or has missed an immusation it’s easy to catch up.

Contact your GP if you have any questions or to schedule an immunisation for your child. Remembering, with winter just around the corner, it is the ideal time to get this years flu vaccinations up to date.

For more information, to download a poster to display in your practice, or to view the videos visit www.medicalmums.com.au.

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