Work in Progress - Vaccination of pre-school children in Northern Ireland

Work in progress

We are currently undertaking work in order to produce this publication. Details of when we aim to publish the finalised report are indicated below.

Vaccination against infectious disease is one of the most successful and cost-effective ways to help manage the health of a population.  However, its effectiveness relies heavily on consistently high levels of participation.

To maximise protection, many vaccine-preventable diseases require a series of immunisations to be administered at pre-determined intervals to infants and small children.  This means that an incomplete course of vaccination for any given disease can not only leave an individual less well-protected, but may also decrease the benefit for the overall population, as reduced cumulative immunity promotes the chains of transmission.

Our study will consider the outcomes of vaccination against 14 diseases for pre-school children across the United Kingdom (UK), by comparing the results in Northern Ireland over the last decade against those in the rest of the UK and World Health Organisation (WHO) targets (It currently recommends that, at the national (UK) level, at least 95 per cent of children are immunised against a number of vaccine-preventable diseases, including diphtheria and polio.).

Our approach will include rates of vaccination by individual Health and Social Care Trust areawithin Northern Ireland. 

We will also examine the issues which have constrained the effectiveness of pre-school vaccination outcomes over time, and use these to identify key actions required to facilitate the rollout of any future large-scale vaccination programmes.