Plaudits as 100pc of tots immunised
Immunisation coverage at GP practices throughout Southland have been applauded by a community vaccination team.
Yesterday, Bester McKay Family Doctors practice nurses Gill McRae and Sue Macpherson were among many congratulated by members of the Southern District Health Board for getting 100 per cent of 2-year-olds in their practice fully immunised and for ongoing high coverage rates.
Ms McRae said it was a team effort to educate the public and make sure they were informed about the free service.
As well as GP practices, Plunket groups and children's wards in the southern health district are also being acknowledged for their contribution to the health board meeting the national immunisation target of 95 per cent in the last quarter.
Unfortunately, it often wasn't until reports of a preventable disease appeared in the media that there was an increased demand for immunisations, Ms McRae said. It was a sad, but timely reminder that often "spurred" people to get their their children vaccinated.
The nurses took an opportunistic approach to educating parents, that began during pregnancy, she said, with common questions regarding side-effects and what was in vaccinations being answered.
As many of the nurses had worked in the community they had strong relationships with people in their practice, which could be why the practice had such high immunisation coverage, she said.
Paediatrician Vili Sotutu said one of the challenges the vaccination team faced was a lack of awareness.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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