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Immunisation - facts and misconceptions
Australian research shows that some parents are concerned about vaccine safety and effectiveness. However, the risk of complications from childhood diseases such as measles is much higher than the risk of immunisation reactions. When parents of young children have had no direct experience of childhood diseases, it is easy to underestimate their effects and complications.
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Immunisation and HALO
The immunisations you may need are decided by your health, age, lifestyle and occupation. Together, these factors are referred to as HALO. HALO is defined as: • Health – some health conditions or factors may make you more vulnerable to vaccinepreventable diseases. For example, premature birth, asthma, diabetes, heart, lung, spleen or kidney conditions, pregnancy, Down syndrome and HIV will mean you may benefit from additional or more frequent immunisations. Age – at different ages you need protection from different vaccine-preventable diseases. Australia’s National Immunisation Program schedule sets out recommended immunisations for babies, children, older people and other people at risk, such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Most recommended vaccines are available at no cost to these groups. Lifestyle – lifestyle choices can have an impact on your immunisation needs. Travelling overseas, planning a family, sexual activity, smoking, and playing contact sport that may expose you directly to someone else’s blood, will mean you may benefit from additional or more frequent immunisations. Occupation – you are likely to require additional or more frequent immunisations if you work in an occupation that exposes you to vaccine-preventable diseases or puts you into contact with people who are more susceptible to problems from vaccine-preventable...
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