Im­mu­ni­sa­tion for teenagers

Central and North Burnett Times - - NEWS -

IM­MU­NI­SA­TION doesn’t end be­fore school, as booster shots and an im­por­tant HPV vac­cine are avail­able and en­cour­aged through a high school pro­gram for Year 7 stu­dents.

These vac­cines re­quire your con­sent as a par­ent.

In ad­di­tion to these two vac­cines, this year the Queens­land Govern­ment has pro­vided Year 10 stu­dents with ac­cess to a free meningo­coc­cal ACWY vac­cine.

There is a lot of un­sub­stan­ti­ated ru­mour in the com­mu­nity about these vac­cines, so let’s have a look at why they’re so im­por­tant. The Year 7 booster shot

While many of the im­mu­ni­sa­tions your child re­ceived in their younger years last a life­time, oth­ers slowly de­crease in their ef­fec­tive­ness over time. This is why the Year 7 booster shot is im­por­tant.

Specif­i­cally, the booster shot cov­ers diph­the­ria, tetanus and whoop­ing cough. This booster is vi­tal to main­tain­ing a high level of com­mu­nity pro­tec­tion against these dis­eases.

Diph­the­ria and tetanus are po­ten­tially fa­tal dis­eases, but thank­fully these dis­eases are rare in Aus­tralia thanks to our im­mu­ni­sa­tion rates and bet­ter liv­ing con­di­tions.

Whoop­ing cough is also a se­ri­ous dis­ease that can kill ba­bies.

HPV vac­cine

The HPV vac­cine pro­tects against a sex­u­ally trans­mit­ted dis­ease that can lead to gen­i­tal warts, and also to cer­vi­cal can­cer in women and pe­nile can­cer in men.

These can­cers cause a lot of dis­tress and can be fa­tal. It’s im­por­tant to im­mu­nise your child be­fore they be­come sex­u­ally ac­tive, which is why the vac­cine is of­fered in their early teens rather than later teens. Meningo­coc­cal ACWY vac­cine

This vac­cine pro­tects against four strains of meningo­coc­cal (A,C, W, Y) and is es­pe­cially im­por­tant af­ter Queens­land recorded a rise in meningo­coc­cal W and Y in­fec­tions dur­ing 2016.

Call your lo­cal Wide Bay Hospi­tal and Health Ser­vice child health team on:

■ Gayn­dah – 4161 3571

■ Mun­dub­bera – 4161 3571 ■ Monto – 4166 9300

■ Biggen­den – 4127 6400

■ Eidsvold – 4165 7100

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