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Waitemata Newborns Among First On Immunisation Reg

MEDIA RELEASE
15 April 2005

Waitemata Newborns Among First On National Immunisation Register

Waitemata newborns will be the first in New Zealand to appear on the National Immunisation Register (NIR) from next week.

The register is a computerised database that records and stores a child’s immunisation history and has so far been used only to record meningococcal B vaccinations.

From April 18 however, all babies born in Rodney, Waitakere City and North Shore City will have their details added, followed by their immunisation information from six weeks of age.

New Zealand’s Immunisation Schedule protects children against nine serious diseases including Measles, Mumps, Rubella and Pertussis (whooping cough).

NIR Project Manager Trish Lawther of HealthWEST PHO has been managing the NIR’s implementation across Waitemata and says the register is a key instrument for reducing the impact of these vaccine-preventable diseases.

“The NIR will be a valuable tool for helping health providers like GPs ensure children receive the right immunisation at the right time. It will also mean improved monitoring of vaccine safety and effectiveness,” she says.

Parents can choose not to have their child’s immunisation history recorded on the National Immunisation Register. However details such as the child’s National Health Number, date and place (DHB) of birth, plus any immunisations already given will remain to allow assessment of immunisation coverage and prevent transmission of the child’s information.

Only authorised providers will be able to update or amend the National Immunisation Register and parents can request their child’s information or ask to have it corrected at any time.

The NIR will be rolled out through the rest of New Zealand by the end of 2005.

ENDS

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