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BC Children’s Hospital clinic increases immunization rates among chronically ill kids and their families

Canada’s first hospital-based family immunization clinic opened at BC Children’s Hospital in 2017, administering 1,997 flu vaccines in its first season. From Oct-Dec 2018, 2,897 patients visited the clinic – more than its first 12 months of operation.

Canada’s first hospital-based family immunization clinic is housed at BC Children’s Hospital and has been in operation since October 2017. The clinic was developed as the result of research conducted by Dr. David Scheifele at BC Children’s Vaccine Evaluation Center, which showed that children with chronic health conditions often do not stay up-to-date on recommended vaccinations. This clinic provides publicly funded immunizations at no cost to all hospital patients, their family members and visitors, increasing overall immunization rates and protecting the most vulnerable patient groups.

Dr. Scheifele’s research showed that children with chronic illnesses like cancer often fall through the cracks when it comes to vaccinations. He proposed the idea of on-site immunization clinics for sick kids in 1995 and saw it become a reality at BC Children’s 21 years later – just in time for his retirement. Dr. Manish Sadarangani with Pediatric Infectious Diseases at BC Children's is now director of the clinic and is proud to see its continued growth.

“The family immunization clinic has helped raise overall vaccination rates and increase protection of our youngest, most vulnerable patient populations from infection,” Dr. Sadarangani says. “Offering vaccines at the hospital, at no cost, makes it easy for families to stay up-to-date and make sure that they are all protected.” 

Vaccines have saved more lives in Canada than any other medical intervention in the past 50 years. Vaccines don't just protect the people getting vaccinated; they protect everyone around them too. The more people in a community who are vaccinated, the harder it is for a disease to spread.

The family immunization clinic at BC Children’s Hospital is located in the Ambulatory Care Building on the main floor. 

For more information, including how to book an appointment, please visit http://www.bcchildrens.ca/our-services/clinics/family-immunization.

SOURCE: BC Children’s Hospital clinic increases immunization rates among chronically ill kids and their families ( )
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