Ask to see the child’s immunization card, and determine whether all the vaccinations recommended for the child’s age have been given. Note any vaccinations the child still needs, and explain this to the mother. Give the vaccinations before the child leaves hospital, and record them on the card.
Recommended vaccination schedule
Table 33 below lists WHO’s international recommendations. National recommendations take account of local disease patterns.
It is important to vaccinate all children, including those who are sick and malnourished, unless there are contraindications. There are only three contraindications to vaccination:
- Do not give BCG or yellow fever vaccine to a child with symptomatic HIV infection or AIDS, but do give the other vaccines.
- Do not give DPT-2 or -3 to a child who has had convulsions or shock within 3 days of the most recent dose.
- Do not give DPT to a child with recurrent convulsions or an active disease of the central nervous system.
A child with diarrhoea who is due to receive oral polio vaccine should be given a dose, but this dose should not be counted in the schedule. Make a note on the child’s immunization record that it coincided with diarrhoea, so that the health worker will give the child an extra dose.