Premature babies are at greater risk of developing vaccine-preventable diseases. Their immune system is weaker which makes them more susceptible to infection.
That's why it is so important that your baby receives his/her vaccinations when due. The only reason to delay them would be if baby is unwell or has a special medical condition.
You will always be asked for your consent before the immunisations are given. This will give you the opportunity to ask any questions or voice any concerns you may have.
The Department of Health recommend the following vaccinations are given at 2, 3, and 4 months of age.
Pediacel - This immunisation protects against:
- Acellular Pertussis or whooping cough
- Haemophilus Influenzae type b or Hib
Prevenar - This immunisation protects against:
- Pneumococcal Meningitis
Other immunisations protect against:
||Immunisation (Vaccine given)
DTaP/IPV(polio)/Hib (diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), polio, and Haemophilus influenzae type b) - all-in-one injection, plus:
PCV (pneumococcal conjugate vaccine) - in a separate injection.
DTaP/IPV(polio)/Hib (2nd dose), plus:
MenC (meningitis C) - in a separate injection
DTaP/IPV(polio)/Hib (3rd dose), plus:
MenC (2nd dose) - in a separate injection, plus:
PCV (2nd dose) - in a separate injection.
Most premature babies tolerate immunisation very well. There can be side effects. Symptoms vary fromredness and swelling at the site of injection to a mild fever. Rarely more serious complications can occur such as apnoea (breathing stopping) and bradycardia (reduction in heart rate). The neonatal team are trained professionals that can easily manage these short term complications. Synagis Synagis vaccination is given to protect against Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) which is a major cause of respiratory illness (bronchiolitis) in children during the winter months. This gives passive immunity to reduce the severity of RSV bronchiolitis. Not all babies will have this vaccination. It is only given if a paediatric consultant considers it to be clinically indicated. It is given as monthly injection in the period October-February. Bacillus Calmette-Guerin B.C.G. Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) provides protection against tuberculosis (TB). BCG vaccine is given if a baby is considered to have an increased risk of coming into contact with TB. Currently the policy is to offer BCG vaccine to: Babies born in areas where rates of TB are high A baby who has one or more parents or grandparents that were born in a country with a high incidence of TB. A baby whose relative or close contact has had TB in the last 5 years. A baby who will be travelling to a TB high risk country in the next 3 months.
Please feel free to ask any questions you may have regarding your baby's immunisations. We are here to listen to your concerns.