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WRHA holds vaccine clinics for missed infant shots as rates drop

A young child gets an immunization in this undated stock image. (Shutterstock) A young child gets an immunization in this undated stock image. (Shutterstock)

The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority is holding a dozen vaccine clinics for parents to get their little ones caught up on shots.

If your child was born in 2019, 2020 or 2021 health region officials say they may have missed getting their Meningococcal C Conjugate (Men-C-C) vaccine.

That shot is recommended for children at 12 months.

According to the region’s Public Health Information Management System, which tracks vaccination rates by birth cohort, the immunization rates dropped 6.2 per cent in 2021.

“Prior to the pandemic we saw around 84 per cent coverage, but when we look at the children born in 2019, 2020 and 2021, we notice a downward trend and that is a concern for us,” said Dr. Bunmi Fatoye, a medical officer of health with the Winnipeg Health Regional Authority (WRHA) in a news release.

One reason why the rate may be dropping, according to the WRHA, is many families may have had interruptions in their health-care services during the pandemic.

It said that high rates of immunization are important to protect those who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons.

According to Wednesday’s release, bacteria causing meningococcal disease are common and transmitted through the airway.

While it is rare, young unvaccinated kids who are exposed to these bacteria are at a higher risk of getting sick with meningitis or septicaemia, which is when the brain or blood gets infected.

“One in three children develop permanent complications and one in 10 may die even with treatment”, said Fatoye.

To help make access to this vaccine easier, clinics have been scheduled for April.

Families can also get the Meningococcal & MMRV (Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Varicella) vaccine at a doctor's office, walk-in clinic, or Walk In Connected Care clinics. Top Stories


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