Vaccinations, also called immunisations, have saved countless lives, and are one of the most effective measures to help you stay well.
Vaccination is an important step in protecting your child against a range of serious and potentially fatal diseases.
Vaccinations are quick, safe and extremely effective. Once your child has been vaccinated against a disease, their body can fight that disease more effectively if they come into contact with it. If a child isn’t vaccinated, they will be at increased risk of catching the illness.
Vaccines for children in Berkshire are provided by your local GP. They should contact you when your child is due a vaccine and it is important that you attend. If you have not yet registered your child with an are GP, you should do this as soon as possible, so as not to delay getting protected. GP registration information can be found here.
The Reading Walk-in Health Centre also provides vaccination services. The Centre is located in Broad Street Mall in Reading town centre. Any patient can access the centre on a walk-in basis and those living in Reading can also choose to register there. The Centre, which is open 365 days a year from 8am to 8pm, is happy to see patients either with or without an appointment.
The childhood schedule ensures that children are protected against illnesses before they begin primary school, although booster doses of some vaccines are given at school. In addition, the vaccine to protect against Human Papiloma Virus is also offered at school (see below).
If more parents have their children vaccinated, then more children in the community will be protected against catching an illness. This lowers the chance of an outbreak of the disease in schools and in the community.
If you have moved into the Berkshire area from abroad where your child had already started a vaccine course or if your child has not started a course at all, the Practice Nurse at your GP will know which vaccines your child will need in order to be up-to-date with the current UK schedule.
If you and your family spend part of your year abroad and your children will need vaccines whilst you are away, please ensure you talk to your Practice Nurse before you leave. If your child has been vaccinated whilst you have been away, please make sure to update your surgery with this information when you return.
It's never too late to vaccinate your children. If they've missed any vaccinations, your Practice Nurse will be able to advise you on which vaccines are needed to ensure they are up-to-date and fully protected.