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Meningococcal B Consent Forms Out In Southland

Southland District Health Board

Monday 2 May 2005

Meningococcal B Consent Forms Out To Southland Students This Week

Parents of school children are being urged to look out for the bright yellow Meningococcal B Immunisation consent forms, coming home with all school students around Southland this week, in preparation for the launch of the school-based Meningococcal B Immunisation Programme at the end of the month.

Project manager Judi Dennis said approximately 18,500 individually labelled forms are being distributed to all school students this week and parents are asked to read them thoroughly, sign and return back to school immediately.

The consent forms provide information on the immunisation programme, including the safety of the vaccine, possible reactions after injections and the protection provided by the vaccine.

The form requests basic information about each child and gives parents the option to either consent or not consent to the series of three Meningococcal B vaccination.

“It is essential parents return the forms as soon as possible, regardless of whether they are consenting to vaccination. This will ensure we know the situation of every child.”

Mrs Dennis said while the consent forms will provide substantial information, she is only too happy to talk to parents who require further information and have questions. Mrs Dennis can be contacted on 03 214 8260 or parents can phone the Ministry of Health’s freephone number on 0800 20 30 90.

Vaccinations at schools will begin on 30 May 2005, with teams of trained nurses visiting schools to vaccinate children over the next 18 weeks.

Each child requires three doses of the vaccine to provide the best protection against the New Zealand epidemic strain of Meningococcal B.

Preschoolers and youth aged under 20 who do not attend school are also eligible for the vaccine and will need to make appointments at their general practice for their vaccinations, starting from 7 June 2005.

Photo/Film Opportunities: Consent forms being loaded on plane to Stewart Island, Consent forms being distributed to students at Gore/Queenstown/Southland schools.

ENDS

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