Online Guide for Newcomers to Prince Edward Island, Canada

Immunization Program

The Immunization Program is offered at no cost to all Island residents under 18 years of age or until leaving school. Children are not required by law to receive vaccines, but it is highly recommended that they do.

Before your child starts school in PEI, it is recommended that he or she is immunized against:

  • measles
  • mumps
  • rubella
  • polio
  • tetanus
  • diphtheria

If an illness for which there is a vaccine is diagnosed in a school, those children who have not been immunized for that disease will not be allowed to attend school until it is safe for them to return.

Adverse Reactions to Vaccines

After getting a vaccine, your child may have:

  • fever
  • decrease in activity
  • decrease in appetite
  • irritability
  • a sore, red, swollen spot at the place where the injection was given, and if the vaccine was given in the leg, a limp for a couple of days
  • a small lump at the place where the injection was given (may last up to two months)

Remember, these reactions are normal and should only last for a couple of days.

Here are some things you can do that may help your child feel better after receiving a vaccine:

  • Hold and cuddle your child.
  • Give your child medication against pain and fever (acetaminophen) right after the vaccine is given. If necessary a second dose may be given four hours later and a third dose four hours after that.
  • If your child has a fever: undress the child, give him or her lots to drink, and acetaminophen every four hours - giving no more than five doses per day (24 hours).
  • Put a cold cloth over the place where the injection was given.

Serious reactions to a vaccine are rare. If your child has a serious reaction, you should call your family doctor, go to the emergency room at the hospital, or go to a walk-in clinic immediately. After you have taken care of your child’s immediate needs, later call your Public Health Nursing Office and tell a nurse what happened.

If you need more information about the benefits of vaccination or adverse reactions, talk to Public Health Nursing office or Chief Health Office. [See Related Resources]

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Online Guide for Newcomers to Prince Edward Island, Canada © by Immigrant & Refugee Services Association of PEI (IRSA) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.

We have made every effort to ensure that the information in this Guide is accurate and up-to-date. If you find of any errors or omissions, please contact us.