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This allows the body to produce antibodies against that particular disease, thus preparing for the attack should the germs strike a second time.

BCG (Bacillus Calmette Guerin):

This vaccination protects against tuberculosis and is compulsory by law for all children under the age of six months. Some hospitals do ensure that it is administered before you leave with your newborn, but if not, do visit your nearest clinic as soon as possible.

DPT (diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough) and tetanus:

Reactions to the diphtheria and tetanus vaccine are rare, while the pertussis vaccine may cause complications, such as mild fever, pain at the site of injection and appetite loss, though usually only lasting for a day or two. If your baby shows signs of persistent crying, high temperature, convulsions and extreme listlessness call your doctor immediately.

MMR (measles, mumps, rubella (German measles):

Measles is a serious disease with at times serious complications, rubella has very mild symptoms which frequently go unnoticed, but because it carries serious effects for pregnant women (birth defects in the foetus), immunization against it is vital. Mumps on the other hand rarely causes serious problems in childhood, but may have drastic affects in adulthood, causing deafness and sterility, therefore early immunization against it is recommended.
Reactions to the MMR injection are usually very mild and only some babies will be affected. A light rash covering the body with a slightly raised temperature and occasionally swelling of the salivary glands may just develop a few days following the immunization. This vaccine may cause problems in those who are severely allergic to egg white, so this issue should be cleared first.


The polio vaccine has saved many a life in it's time, with children usually receiving a total of four doses before they start school. This vaccine rarely has any side effects, but should be postponed in babies who are ill with anything more than the normal cold.

Haemophilus b vaccines:

What is Hib?

Haemophilus Influenza type b (Hib) is a specific type of germ that can infect young children, resulting in a number of serious illnesses. The main disease caused by Hib is meningitis - a serious ailment in which the lining of the brain becomes inflamed and swells. Meningitis is a great cause of death, and can cause permanent brain damage in survivors.
In addition to meningitis, Hib can cause Pneumonia, Septicaemia (blood poisoning) and infections of the bones and joints. Epiglottis - a severe fatal swelling of the throat is another illness caused by Hib.
Hib is not the only bacterium that can cause these diseases.

Is your child at risk?

Most cases of serious Hib disease occur in children under the age of two years. At this young age their natural defenses against diseases are not fully developed. Hib can also affect older children and adults - but by the time the child reaches five years of age, his immune system should have developed enough to protect him against Hib disease. Hib is very infectious and can easily be passed from one child to another in the same manner as would a 'winter cold', therefore it is suggested that you consider protecting your child against this life-threatening disease.

Hepatitis b vaccine:

Hepatitis b is a serious disease affecting the liver, which can go on to be the cause of cancer later in life. Children are likely only to develop this illness if they come into contact with an infected adult, but the main reason for this vaccination program is to ensure that children are immune to the disease before they reach maturity, as adult immunization has proved ineffective.