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Immunisations for children and young people

Introduction

Children and young people are entitled to certain immunisation services free of charge. These are provided in GP surgeries, in hospitals, in health clinics or in school (depending on the circumstances).

Immunisation is a safe and effective way to help the body prevent or fight off certain diseases. Immunisation is provided through vaccinations. Under the Childhood Immunisation Programme all vaccines and their administration are provided free of charge for all children.

Parents must consent to vaccinations for children and young people up to the age of 16. Vaccination is not compulsory, but is strongly advised by the Department of Health. You should discuss any concerns you may have with your GP/family doctor before making a decision about your child's immunisation.

Rules

Childhood immunisation schedule

Age Where Vaccine
Birth Hospital or HSE clinic BCG vaccination (a vaccine to protect against tuberculosis)
2 months GP 6 in 1 (diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough (pertussis), polio, Hib (Haemophilus Influenzae Type B) and Hepatitis B is provided in one single injection) plus vaccine against Pneumococcal Disease in a separate injection. Babies born on or after 1 October 2016 are also given vaccines against Meningococcal B and rotavirus disease.
4 months GP 6 in 1 (diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough (pertussis), polio, Hib (Haemophilus Influenzae Type B) and Hepatitis B is provided in one single injection). In addition, babies born before 1 October 2016 are vaccinated against Meningococcal C. Babies born on or after 1 October are given vaccines against Meningococcal B and rotavirus disease.
6 months GP 6 in 1 (diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough (pertussis), polio, Hib (Haemophilus Influenzae Type B) and Hepatitis B is provided in one single injection) and also vaccine against Pneumococcal Disease. Babies born on or after 1 October are also given vaccine against Meningococcal C.
12 months GP MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine. In addition, babies born before 1 October 2016 are given vaccine against Pneumococcal Disease. Babies born on or after 1 October are given vaccine against Meningococcal B.
13 months GP Vaccine against Meningococcal C and Hib (Haemophilus Influenzae Type B). Babies born on or after 1 October 2016 are given vaccine against Pneumococcal Disease.
4–5 years GP or school 4 in 1 (diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough (pertussis) and polio), plus MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine.
11–14 years

1st year in second-level schools

Girls in 1st year in second-level schools

School

School

Tdap (tetanus and low-dose diphtheria) booster. Meningococcal C booster.

HPV (Human Papillomavirus Virus) vaccine (2 doses).

Rates

These vaccinations are free of charge.

How to apply

Information about all immunisations is available from your GP, public health nurse or Local Health Office. The HSE's National Immunisation Office Website and the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC), have produced useful factsheets on immunisations for parents, in a number of languages.

Where to apply

Childhood immunisation services are usually offered to parents in the hospital where the baby was born and by contact from the HSE, through GPs and through the schools immunisation programme.

You can also contact your Local Health Office or your GP directly.

Page edited: 25 October 2016

Language

Gaeilge

Contact Us

If you have a question relating to this topic you can contact the Citizens Information Phone Service on 0761 07 4000 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm) or you can visit your local Citizens Information Centre.