Dozens of Dorset babies not being vaccinated

Dozens of Dorset babies not being vaccinated

Published by Maria Greenwood at 10:53am 7th January 2020.

Dozens of Dorset babies have missed out on important jabs meant to protect them from potentially deadly illnesses.

Young children should get the so-called six-in-one jab, which protects against six serious infections including polio, whooping cough and diphtheria, in the first few months of their lives.

Public Health England data shows that 64 children in Dorset who had their first birthday in the six months to September missed out on the vaccination.

But 95.9% of one-year-old's did have it, meaning the area was above the 95% rate recommended by the World Health Organisation to prevent outbreaks.

Meningitis-vaccination-1

The uptake rate for the South West over the period was 93.9% – the second-highest of any region in the country.

The British Society for Immunology said the uptake rate across England for the six-in-one vaccine among one-year-olds has averaged around 92% over the past year.

The group's chief executive Dr Doug Brown said:

"Low levels of vaccination coverage matter as it means these diseases have the potential to spread within our communities, infecting unvaccinated people, with young babies and people with compromised immune systems particularly at risk.

"We urge the new government to deliver on its promise to develop the UK’s first vaccine strategy and to fully fund immunisation services to ensure our communities are protected against these preventable diseases."

child baby

But he also urged parents to make sure their children get the jabs.

He added:

"If you are worried your child hasn’t received all the doses of the six-in-one vaccine, do make an appointment at your GP surgery.

"It’s much better to get your child vaccinated than risk them catching one of these nasty diseases."

'Immunisation'

Babies should have three rounds of the six-in-one vaccination at eight, 12 and 16 weeks of age.

It helps them develop a strong immunity to diphtheria, hepatitis B, haemophilus influenza type b, polio, tetanus and whopping cough – all described by the NHS as “serious childhood diseases”.

nurse injection

Health minister Nicola Blackwood said:

“Every child must be vaccinated against dangerous and potentially fatal diseases. Vaccine uptake is very high, at around 90%, for most childhood vaccines, but we are determined to drive rates up even further.

"Our new vaccination strategy, published in the new year, will consider a range of approaches to improve uptake.”