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
TOPV
Intradermal injection to right upper arm
Drops by mouth
6 weeks
TOPV
RV
DTP-IPV/Hib
Hepatitis B
PCV7
Drops by mouth
Liquid by mouth
Intramuscular injection to the left thigh
Intramuscular injection to the right thigh
Intramuscular injection to the right thigh
10 weeks
DTP-IPV/Hib
Hepatitis B
Intramuscular injection to the left thigh
Intramuscular injection to the right thigh
14 weeks
RV
DTP-IPV/Hib
Hepatitis B
PCV7
Liquid by mouth
Intramuscular injection to the left thigh
Intramuscular injection to the right thigh
Intramuscular injection to the right thigh
9 months
Measles
PCV7
Intramuscular injection to the left thigh
Intramuscular injection to the right thigh
18 months
DTP-IPV/Hib
Measles
Intramuscular injection to the left arm
Intramuscular injection to the right arm
6 years (both boys and girls)
Td
Intramuscular injection to the left arm
12 years (both boys and girls)
Td
Intramuscular injection to the left arm
Source: South African Vaccination and Immunisation Centre 
 
BCG – Bacilli Calmete-Guerin (Anti-tuberculosis vaccine)
TOPV – Trivalent oral polio vaccine
DTP-IPV/Hib – diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis vaccine, inactivated polio vaccine, Haemophilus influenza type b vaccine
Td – tetanus and diphtheria vaccine
RV - rotavirus vaccine
PCV7- 7-valent pneumococcal 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.

Comments

Mrs. Plaatjies wrote 1 week 5 days ago

My grandchild is now due for his 6 year vaccine. His mum passed away and we got hold of his clinic card. So I went to the clinic, but they could not trace all his vaccinations. Is it possible that he could have been given a vaccine e.g. 14 weeks but skipped the 10 week one? If he did get it and they give it to him again, what can happen?

admin wrote 1 week 5 days ago

Unfortunately, we don't have the medical facts to give you an answer to this question, so you will need to ask your clinic sister or a medical doctor for their advice.

erika wrote 2 weeks 6 days ago

My son is 14 and was booked off for influenza till yesterday. Can he receive dt injection today?

admin wrote 2 weeks 6 days ago

Please consult with a medical doctor for professional advice or ask a clinic sister qualified to answer your questions.

Anonymous wrote 3 weeks 9 hours ago

My son turned 12 years old in May. He has missed his booster for Polio 5 and DT 1 when he was six. Can I take him for a booster now and what vaccine can I give him? The school is also giving him the diphtheria vaccine this week as well.

admin wrote 3 weeks 2 hours ago

You should be able to catch up vaccines that you've missed, but it all depends on the vaccine. So we recommend that you enquire with a medical doctor or your baby clinic. The diphtheria vaccine is likely a booster, and recommended as there is a current outbreak of the disease.

Anonymous wrote 3 weeks 1 day ago

My baby had his last vacs at 9 months and on his card the next one is at 12 months. When looking at most online charts they state 15 months.

admin wrote 3 weeks 2 hours ago

The schedule is as per the information above. However, this may be for a booster vaccination. Either way, we recommend that you follow the timeframe given to you by your baby clinic. 

Anonymous wrote 3 weeks 5 days ago

My big boy is 8 years old and up to date with his vaccines and the small one is 21 months old, also up to date. I am wondering if I should take them to the clinic for the diphtheria vaccine drive in KZN.

admin wrote 3 weeks 2 hours ago

If this is a booster vaccine, it's probably a good idea. If in any doubt, please ask a medical doctor or clinic sister for their professional advice.

Angie wrote 3 weeks 6 days ago

My niece is 7 years old and has had the diphtheria injection at her school two days ago. I think it's the mop-up programe, as the government calls it. She has a fever and vomiting and the area is very painful. Should we be worried? Is this vacation dangerous at all? 

admin wrote 3 weeks 6 days ago

Redness around the area of the injection is not unusual. However, if you are at all concerned with your niece's health, which may be unrelated to the vaccination, we urge you to take her to a medical doctor. The vaccinations on the schedule are deemed safe, which is why they are recommended.

Anonymous wrote 4 weeks 2 days ago

My daughter is doing her vaccinations according to the priviate schedule. The pharmacies in Richards Bay cannot seem to get the 9 month chickenpox vaccination. They say it's not available nationally. Is this true?

admin wrote 4 weeks 2 days ago

Unfortunately, we don't know. Perhaps enquire at pharmacies outside your area or ask your medical doctor for advice.

Anonymous wrote 5 weeks 2 days ago

My baby went for his 6 week vaccinations. I think he may have had a little reaction to the RV vaccine. The following day he started diarrhoea, stuffy nose, and non-stop crying and still is almost a week later! How long do the side effects last?

admin wrote 5 weeks 1 day ago

We urge you to consult with your family doctor, as these symptoms may have nothing to do with the vaccinations.

Anne mtshali wrote 5 weeks 2 days ago

I stay with my 10-month-old grandson. He is up to date with his immunisation schedule. I have been exposed to someone with mumps. He has not had his MMR. Is it possible for him to get it even if I don't have symptoms yet?

admin wrote 5 weeks 1 day ago

The MMR vaccine is given at 15 months. Please consult with a clinic sister or medical doctor about your concerns.

Anne wrote 5 weeks 2 days ago

Can you please tell me if children get a vaccination for chickenpox and when it gets done? Is there a specific code for it?

admin wrote 5 weeks 1 day ago

Chickenpox is caused by the varicella-zoster virus. The varicella vaccine is given to help prevent chickenpox, but it's not on the schedule. You will need to enquire about its availability at a clinic, pharmacy or discuss your concerns with your family doctor.

Anonymous wrote 5 weeks 5 days ago

Hi, my son didn't go for any of his vaccinations last year. He is now 5 years old. Is there a vaccine he needs to get at this age and do you perhaps know how much it costs at Clicks or Dischem?

admin wrote 5 weeks 1 day ago

If your child was up to date at 18 months, his next shots are at 6 years old, according to the schedule. We're unsure about prices -- you will need to enquire at a pharmacy that offers vaccines. Also, if you're unsure about anything, we advise that you speak to a clinic sister.

Anonymous wrote 6 weeks 5 hours ago

My son missed his 15 month injections; he is now 18 months old. Can they give him the 15 month injections and 18 month injections in one visit?

admin wrote 5 weeks 6 days ago

We're sure that you can catch up on the missed vaccinations, but we're not sure if your baby clinic will do this all in one go. We recommend that you check with your clinic sister or ask your medical doctor.

Anonymous wrote 6 weeks 9 hours ago

Hi, my son turned 12 in December 2015. He hasn't received his vaccines as yet. Will the vaccines still be given to my son?

Concerned mum...Savita

admin wrote 6 weeks 6 hours ago

Children who have missed their scheduled vaccinations can often catch up, so we advise that you chat to a clinic sister or your family doctor about the best way forward. Some vaccines are age-specific, but there are often alternatives available to ensure your child is immunised against preventable diseases.

Anonymous wrote 6 weeks 1 day ago

My daughter is 10 months old. I've heard that there is a flu vaccination. I took her for the 9 months vaccinations. Is the flu one necessary?

admin wrote 6 weeks 6 hours ago

The flu vaccine is not required. Each year, a new flu vaccine is made available to the public. We recommend that you chat to your family doctor or clinic sister about whether or not your child can or should have it.

Shervorne wrote 6 weeks 1 day ago

I have taken my daughter for the vitamin A injection; however, the clinic advised to bring her back for a vitamin C injection. Seeing that I am giving her Creche Guard and Scotts emulsion, is it necessary to take her back to the clinic to get her vitamin C? Please advise.

admin wrote 6 weeks 1 day ago

Unfortunately, we cannot give such medical advice. If your clinic sister has advised you to get it, we recommend that you follow their advice. But do inform them of any supplements you are already giving your child.

Anonymous wrote 6 weeks 3 days ago

My step-daughter has not had any vaccinations since she was born. She now needs to go to Grade 1 and they require an up-to-date vaccination card. How can we rectify this? Can she catch up on all of them now? She will be 6 years old in July.

admin wrote 6 weeks 2 days ago

Yes, you should be able to catch up with most if not all the required vaccinations. We urge you to get your child to a clinic sister or your family doctor for proper medical advice.

Anonymous wrote 7 weeks 9 hours ago

Hi, my son is going to turn 16 months in May and he hasn't had his one year immunisation as yet. Can I still take him for his one year immunisation, or rather just wait till 18 months? I've heard of a few people that took their children for the one year immunisation.

admin wrote 7 weeks 1 hour ago

According to the recommended schedule, if your child has had his 9 month vaccinations, the next ones due are at 18 months. We're not sure what immunisations are required at 12 months, but to be on the safe side, ask your baby clinic or family doctor.

Mumsy wrote 7 weeks 1 day ago

I'm taking my son for his 24 month schedule of vitamins as the nurse has mentioned. Are those vitamins important?

 

admin wrote 7 weeks 1 day ago

If the health practitioner has advised it, then we recommend you follow their advice. Vitamins are not vaccines, but they will help your child stay healthy.

Anonymous wrote 7 weeks 2 days ago

My daughter is 15 months old and had her last vaccine (measles) in November last year. What vaccine is she now due for?

admin wrote 7 weeks 1 day ago

According to the schedule, the vaccine against measles is given at 9 months and again at 18 months. However, the MMR vaccine is also given at 15 months, so please ask your baby clinic for advice and make sure you keep a record of all your child's immunisations.

Anonymous wrote 7 weeks 2 days ago

My daughter will be turning 3 in May. Is she due for a shot?

admin wrote 7 weeks 1 day ago

If she is up to date, she would have had her vaccinations at 18 months, so the next shots are due at 6 years old. However, she may require booster shots, so you could enquire with your baby clinic or doctor about that.

shaday wrote 7 weeks 5 days ago

My baby is 7 weeks old and I'm going to the clinic on 12 May, but my baby didn't get any BCG or anything yet. My baby looks healthy. Should I be worried? 

admin wrote 7 weeks 5 days ago

If your child has not received any vaccinations yet, you should request these at your baby clinic at your next visit.

Anonymous wrote 7 weeks 6 days ago

My baby girl will be turning 2 years in September this year. Is there a vaccine that she must get? 

admin wrote 7 weeks 5 days ago

According to the schedule, if your child has had the 18 month vaccines, the next ones are only due at 6 years old.

Anonymous wrote 8 weeks 6 days ago

My child missed her 6 year vaccination; she is now 7. Can I take her for the vaccine?

admin wrote 8 weeks 2 days ago

Yes, we understand that you may still get the vaccine. However, please ask your baby clinic or family doctor for proper medical advice.

Mmabatho wrote 9 weeks 1 day ago

Can someone help me with clinics or a pharmacy in Balfourpark and surrounding areas that has government stock for immunisations? My baby is due for the 18-month vaccine.

admin wrote 9 weeks 1 day ago

Hi there. You will need to contact your nearest baby clinic and make your enquiry directly.

Anonymous wrote 10 weeks 1 day ago

During moves and divorce and flooding in our one house etc. I've lost my son's immunisation card. He is now due his 6 year booster and I have to register him for Grade 1 next year. I'm worried that no school will take him without this. What do I do?

admin wrote 10 weeks 5 hours ago

The baby clinic(s) where your son received the immunisations should have a record.

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