Immunizations protect health in childhood and beyond

April 24, 2023
Public Health Nurse Erin with Kamloops mom Julie and twins Gabriel and Alexandrite. The boys recently received their 18 month immunizations.

Kamloops mother Julie Smith has never doubted the importance of routine immunizations in keeping herself and her family healthy.

Even following a febrile seizure during their routine 18-month immunization, she is committed to keeping her children as healthy as possible and keeping their vaccine schedule on track.

“Children’s health and immunity is very important, it’s just an added layer of protection. I always get my vaccines including my flu shots and make sure we stay up-to-date.”

Her identical twin boys Gabriel and Alexandrite recently received their 18 month immunization. One of the boys had a febrile seizure following his vaccination. Febrile seizures, also known as fever seizures, are a rare response to an immunization when a fever has developed. Although they can be scary to witness, they typically only last from 30 seconds to two minutes and are not harmful. Both boys are as happy and healthy as ever and Julie remains resolved to keeping up their layers of protection.

Vaccines are available to protect against diseases such as cervical cancer, influenza, whooping cough, meningitis, chickenpox and hepatitis.

In B.C., young children are offered vaccines at two, four, six, 12, and 18 months of age. As children get older and begin school, vaccinations continue to be offered. This is to help children develop protection against vaccine preventable diseases. Some vaccinations need booster doses as children enter their teens.

“It is hard to imagine a world without vaccines” said Dr. Fatemeh Sabet, Interior Health medical health officer. “I am so grateful for having access to a simple tool that has saved millions of lives and prevented serious consequences of so many vaccine preventable communicable diseases.”

The need for vaccinations does not stop as you get older. There are many vaccines recommended for adults. All adults in B.C. can get a booster of tetanus and diphtheria vaccine every 10 years. If you missed your basic series of vaccines in childhood, or depending on your health, age and other risk factors, you could be eligible for certain vaccines.

“I feel privileged that families like Julie trust me as a nurse to provide such a gift and to work with them to promote and protect optimal health,” says Erin Fulton, a public health nurse in Kamloops.

  • Nurses like Erin are always available to talk to individuals or families with questions about vaccinations. Contact your local health unit to speak to a public health nurse.
  • Check out this article for five things you need to know about immunizations and vaccines.
  • Visit our Immunizations & Vaccines page for information on important immunizations for infants, children and adults, as well as immunizations for travel.

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