Immunisation Schedule

South Africa’s immunisation schedule is in line with the World Health Organization’s recommendations of how children should be vaccinated
By Child Magazine

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The World Health Organization’s (WHO) Expanded Programme of Immunization (EPI) encourages vaccination against measles, polio, pertussis (whooping cough), diphtheria, tetanus and tuberculosis. The South African Department of Health’s immunisation schedule is in line with the WHO’s vaccination recommendations. Between two and three million deaths are prevented globally each year by effective immunisation.
 
Recommended immunisation schedule 
Age of child
Vaccine needed
How and where it is given
Birth
BCG 
OPV (0)
Intradermal injection to right upper arm
Drops by mouth
6 weeks
OPV (1)
RV (1)
DTaP-IPV-Hib-HepB (1)
PCV (1)
Drops by mouth
Liquid by mouth
Intramuscular injection to the left thigh
Intramuscular injection to the right thigh
10 weeks
DTaP-IPV-HIB-HepB (2)
Intramuscular injection to the left thigh
14 weeks
RV (2)
DTaP-IPV-Hib-HepB (3)
PCV (2)
Liquid by mouth 
Intramuscular injection to the left thigh 
Intramuscular injection to the right thigh
6 months
Measles (1)
Intramuscular injection to thigh or arm
9 months
PCV (3)
Intramuscular injection to the right thigh
12 months
Measles (2) Intramuscular injection to thigh or arm
18 months
DTaP-IPV-Hib-HepB (4) Intramuscular injection to the left arm
6 years (both boys and girls)
Td (1)
Intramuscular injection to the left arm
12 years (both boys and girls)
Td (2)
Intramuscular injection to the left arm
Source: National Institute for Communicable Diseases  
 
BCG – Tuberculosis vaccine (Bacille Calmette-Guerrin)
OPV – Oral polio vaccine
DTaP-IPV-Hib-HepB – Diphtheria-tetanus-acellular pertussis-injectable polio-Haemophilus influenzae b- Hepatitis B vaccine
Td – Tetanus, reduced dose diphtheria vaccine
RV - Rotavirus vaccine
PCV - Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine
 
These vaccinations are available at government clinics and from private sector health facilities, but at a cost. There are also additional vaccinations, such as the MMR vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella, which should be done at 15 months and again as a booster at five years. Keep a record of your child’s vaccinations as schools may ask for proof of immunisation when you register.

Note: The above schedule is in line with the national expanded program on immunization (EPI) schedule in use from 2016. Multiple other schedules are available from private providers. 

Comments

Raj wrote 2 weeks 3 days ago

Hi,

My child requires the Td vaccine at the age of 6 years. Does it come as a single vaccine or in combination? Is it safe to give Infanrix or Hexasim? Are these two products the same thing? Can this vaccination scheduled for 6 years of age be given a month later when my child turns 6 years.

 

Thanks for anticipated help.

admin wrote 10 hours 3 min ago

According to the above schedule, the Td vaccine is a single injection, however it would be advisable to address mediacl queries to your doctor or clinic. It is recommended that vaccines are given as your child turns the given age, or as soon after as possible. 

Lynette Reddy wrote 4 weeks 23 hours ago

At 12 years old, do you need the vaccinication or can you skip it?

admin wrote 4 weeks 11 hours ago

According to the above schedule you do need a vaccination at 12 years old. Should you have any queries or concerns it would be advisable to speak to your doctor or a family clinic. 

Anonymous wrote 4 weeks 3 days ago

My daughter is nine months old and she visited the clinic at six month for measles and vitamin A. Is there any immunization she missed at 7 and 8 months?  

Tamlyn wrote 4 weeks 3 days ago

According to the above schedule, there are no vaccinations required at 7 or 8 months. However, please consult your Road to Health clinic card and your family clinic, to ensure nothing has been missed. 

Anonymous wrote 4 weeks 6 days ago

My son is now 9 years old, but he missed his 6 /7 year immunisation. Can he still go for that?

Tamlyn wrote 4 weeks 6 days ago

Your son should still be able to catch up on this vaccination, but please confirm this with your clinic or doctor.

Roxanne Kloppers wrote 5 weeks 2 days ago

I took my 10 week old for his vaccines at the local Dischem pharmacy. They advised that the Prevenar or PCV vaccine moved to nine months, and so did not give it. Today when taking him for his 14 week vaccinations at a different pharmacy the pharmacist was confused by this and says that it has not moved. He is now behind two PCV vaccines. Did it move to 9 months old or should he get them?

admin wrote 5 weeks 1 day ago

According to the latest immunisation schedule (updated above), some of the vaccinations have moved by a few months. The PCV vaccines however, are due at 6 weeks, 14 weeks and 9 months. We would suggest that you speak to your pharmacy or paediatrician about catching up on any missed vaccinations.

Mohamed wrote 5 weeks 3 days ago

My child is 4 years old and was taken for all of his vaccines. I only realised lately when the DOH was visiting schools to administer the Measles vaccines that the doctor had only given him the "Measles1" vaccine at 9 months and skipped the ''Measles2'' vaccine at 18 months. Apparently it is a norm with this doctor but he advises to take the 2nd vaccination if you wish. Could you advise the difference between the 2 vaccinations and how important the 2nd vaccination is?

admin wrote 5 weeks 3 days ago

According to the Health Department, there are two types of measles vaccine available in South Africa; the single vaccine and the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine. The vaccine is less effective in infants under one year, so the two doses are essential. It's also never too late to catch up on the missed vaccination, and during outbreaks or mass campaigns, older children, adolescents or adults can receive vaccinations. 

Anonymous wrote 6 weeks 2 days ago

My son is 24 months. He received a normal measles injection at 18 months. The clinic wants give him a full measles injection and they also added another Hep A and Hep B. Is this a requirement to get?

admin wrote 6 weeks 9 hours ago

According to the above schedule, your son shouldn’t need any injection at 24 months, unless he has missed something along the way. However, we would suggest speaking to a doctor about your concerns. 

Elisha wrote 6 weeks 3 days ago

Hi. My little boy is 30 weeks old. Can he still have the measbio vaccine? He could not get it when he was 24 weeks.

admin wrote 6 weeks 2 days ago

Yes, your son should still be able to catch up on the missed vaccination. But please speak to your doctor or family clinic for confirmation. 

Anonymous wrote 6 weeks 3 days ago

My little girl will be turning 6 in January 2018.  We will be travelling to Bali and Malaysia from November 2017 to December 2017.  Can she get her TD vaccinations done earlier?

admin wrote 6 weeks 3 days ago

Your daughter should be covered for tetanus and diphtheria if she has had all her other shots, so she shouldn’t need to do the six-year one until she returns. But it would be best to speak to your doctor or a travel clinic to confirm this. 

Shuhana wrote 6 weeks 6 days ago

Hi, my daughter has missed her 15 month MMR vaccine. She is now 3 years old. Can I still vaccinate? 

admin wrote 6 weeks 6 days ago

You should still be able to catch up on any missed vaccines, but please double check this with your clinic or paediatrician. 

Anonymous wrote 8 weeks 9 hours ago

According to the Sister that gave my son his 6 weeks vaccine, there is no sign of him receiving his after-birth vaccine. What should I do? 

Tamlyn wrote 7 weeks 6 days ago

We would suggest contacting your son's paediatrician or the clinic you attended when your child was born, to confirm this. You can then catch up on any missed injections. 

Anonymous wrote 9 weeks 8 hours ago

My daughter is 24 weeks old; can she still recieve the 14 weeks' vaccination?

Tamlyn wrote 9 weeks 3 hours ago

Your daughter should be able to catch up on any missed vaccinations. But it would be advisable to speak to your doctor or clinic sister about this as soon as possible. 

Shizette wrote 9 weeks 2 days ago

Hello, I have lost my 5 year old son's Road to Health book. He's received all his vaccinations but how do I get another copy/verification of it? I am currently living out of South Africa and cannot go in person to the clinic to get it - what do I do? I mainly need it to enroll him in school (which has started already 2 weeks ago). I tried calling his pediatrician and they say that since the doctor has not given him any vacccines (because he received all at the clinic) they are not able to provide me with a record. Please help!

Tamlyn wrote 9 weeks 2 days ago

The clinic where your son recieved his immunisations should have a record of these. You can try contacting them by phone or email, to see if they can send you verification. 

Anonymous wrote 9 weeks 3 days ago

My baby is 15 months old and last went to the clinic when he was 13 months old. What vaccine did he miss out on and what must he now get?

Tamlyn wrote 9 weeks 3 days ago

According to the above schedule, no vaccines are required between 13 and 15 months. However, you should check your son's Road to Health clinic card, to ensure that all his vaccinations are up to date. If any have been missed it is advisable to get these as soon as possible.

Anonymous wrote 12 weeks 2 days ago

Hi there. I know of a little girl who has not had her shots since 15 months. She is almost 4 years old now. What can be done in this instance as I am aware that this affects her being accepted into school?

Tamlyn wrote 10 weeks 6 days ago

Although the Education Department requires children to be vaccinated before entering the formal schooling system, it is up the parents to decide whether or not to vaccinate their children. For those choosing to vaccinate, but having missed out on a few, they are able to take their children to a state or private clinic to get them updated.  In your case you can point the parents to our Immunisation Schedule, which will give them all the necessary information they require to get their child school-ready.

Anonymous wrote 12 weeks 3 days ago

My 16 month old has been in contact with a child who has measles, should I be worried?

Tamlyn wrote 10 weeks 6 days ago

Our children grow up surrounded by many germs and viruses, and if your child has been vaccinated she should be fine, but please speak to your doctor or clinic if you are concerned, or if your child displays any of the following symptoms: a fever, dry cough, sore throat and runny nose, red and inflamed eyes or tiny white spots with bluish-white centres on a red background found inside the mouth on the inner lining of the cheek. For more information read our Measles faqs 

Mitesh Bhowan wrote 16 weeks 1 day ago

We have lost our 4 year old son's clinic card during our last house move. We are now looking at moving again and the new schools list the clinic card as a requirement. How do we manage this? He has had all his vaccines from birth till now. We are really worried that schools wont accept him.

Tamlyn wrote 16 weeks 10 hours ago

The clinic where your son recieved his shots should have a record of these, so you can request this record from them. Your doctor should also have a record of the shots, and schools will often accept a letter from the doctor confirming this. 

Anonymous wrote 16 weeks 2 days ago

My son is 24 weeks and I just got an email from Dischem saying that he is due for his next vaccination. From my knowledge the next one is supposed to be at 9 months in November. Is there a 24 weeks vaccinations that I might not be aware of? #Newmom

Tamlyn wrote 16 weeks 2 days ago

According to the above schedule, the next vaccinations would be at 9 months. However, we would advise you to check his clinic / Road to Health card, to make sure that his vaccinations are up to date. 

Phumla Sweetness wrote 16 weeks 2 days ago

The last time my son went for immunization he was 2 years and six months. When must he go again?

Tamlyn wrote 16 weeks 2 days ago

If all of his vaccinations are complete, he should only need to go again at six years. We would advise you to check his clinic / Road to Health card, to make sure that all vaccinations have been done. 

Anonymous wrote 17 weeks 2 days ago

My child is 3 years 5 months now and her last vaccination was when she was 18 months. When I check her clinic card it says 6 years is the next vacciantion. I just want to double check if this is correct or I am missing any injection between 4 years and 5 years. Please help.

Tamlyn wrote 17 weeks 1 day ago

According to the above schedule, there are no vaccinations needed between 18 months and 6 years, provided your child hasn't missed any vaccinations. But if you are concerned, it would be best to take her Clinic Card to your nearest clinic to confirm that all is in order. 

Bavs wrote 18 weeks 1 day ago

My daughter is almost 13 months old and, as the immunisation schedule suggests, she needs to have vaccinations at 12 months old. The place where I take her for immunisations does not have the measles one in stock at the moment but has the rest. Is that advisable?

Tamlyn wrote 18 weeks 11 hours ago

We would suggest that your daughter have the other vaccinations in the meantime, and you should find out when the measles vaccine will be in stock or ask at another clinic nearby, possibly Dischem, if they have stock available.

Anonymous wrote 21 weeks 5 days ago

My baby is 10 weeks old and she had to get her 10 weeks' vaccination. At the clinic they only gave her the DTaP-Hib-HepB and left the RV and PCV vaccine and was told I must come back next month. Do I need to find another clinic to get the left vaccine or wait for the date I was given to come back?

Tamlyn wrote 21 weeks 3 days ago

According to the above schedule the RV and PCV vaccines are only given at 14 weeks, so we would suggest that you go back when advised by the clinic. 

Anonymous wrote 24 weeks 3 hours ago

Which page copies of the Road-To-Health card should we give to the schools?

Tamlyn wrote 23 weeks 6 days ago

As far as we know, the important ones are those showing the record of vaccinations. However, if you are uncertain, please speak to the school, or send through copies of all the pages. 

Anonymous wrote 24 weeks 2 days ago

Good afternoon, my daughter is now 15 months and received her MMR at just over 12 months... Today it has been confirmed, she has measels :( Does she still have to go for her 2nd measels vac at 18 months?

Tamlyn wrote 24 weeks 8 hours ago

Please speak to your doctor. He or she would be able to best direct you as to when your daughter will need another vaccination. 

BonnieSboe wrote 24 weeks 3 days ago

Good day. Is there a vaccination for 3 years six months?

Tamlyn wrote 24 weeks 2 days ago

According to the schedule outlined above, children are only vaccinated every few months up until 18 months, and then again at six years. 

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