Here at the Harrow Health Care Centre we provide a full range of children's immunisations in accordance with the Department of Health Guidelines and you will find our nurses are knowledgeable about the routine childhood immunisations schedule. We are proud of the information from our audit which identifies 100% coverage of recommended childhood immunisations for the babies registered in our Practice.
We are also very familiar with the recommended immunisations schedule for babies born outside the UK, in particular, the babies born in the United States. Their immunisations schedules are slightly different and include other vaccines namely Hepatitis B, Rotavirus and Varicella. We know how important it is that children travelling round the globe follow the immunisation schedule of their nationality. You will also find our doctors knowledgeable and able to adapt schedules and requirements according to their needs.
Rotavirus is a disease that causes severe diarrhoea mostly in babies and young children. In the UK we use a 2 dose schedule with the first dose to be given between 6 and 12 weeks and the last at least by 32 weeks of age. It is usually given at the same time as other vaccines in the childhood schedule.
Hepatitis B vaccine is given widely in other countries, but the incidence of Hepatitis B in the UK is considered too low to justify its inclusion in the UK schedule. Parents who regularly travel would do well to have their baby immunised against Hepatitis B. The vaccine can be given at birth, is a course of 3 injections and can be completed within 6 months.
This vaccine is available in Europe and mandatory in the United States but in the UK is not currently recommended as a routine childhood immunisation. Many parents find the requirement to keep a child off from school or nursery for a week when they contract the illness and the uncertainty associated with the long incubation period (21 days) somewhat unnerving and prefer to have their child immunised. There are still 300 cases of chickenpox in the U.K. each year. Most cases are mild but there are still some cases with severe complications. Vaccination can be given at the same time as MMR i.e. around 12-13 months. Children over 13 require two doses of Varicella and current guidelines in the UK recommend only one dose, although recent information suggests a second dose for all children should now be considered.
We are pleased to be able to offer both Mantoux testing and BCG immunisation. The schools programme for routinely immunising year 8 and 9 children is no longer in force and current recommendations are to immunise babies in areas with high incidence of tuberculosis. This generates a postcode lottery and also some uncertainty amongst parents about the importance of having their children immunised against tuberculosis. We would certainly recommend immunising any youngster who plans to travel and anyone who may be considering a health care career. Children over the age of 6 require Mantoux testing to identify whether they have any natural immunity (or even perhaps latent TB) before proceeding to the BCG immunisation. Children under 6 and, of course, babies do not require any testing so it is a much more straightforward procedure. We are happy to perform both Mantoux tests and BCG vaccinations on your children should you wish.
Adults: We offer a Mantoux testing service for adults. Two appointments are made for each patient at an interval of exactly 48 hours.The first is for the test to be administered and the second is for it to be read after the correct time interval has passed. Please note that Mantoux tests cannot be given if the patient has had any live vaccines administered in the previous 4 weeks – for example MMR or Yellow Fever vaccines.
Please click here to visit our pages devoted to these special vaccines.
We do not currently offer a single vaccine service, but can order measles vaccines on an individual basis. This service is offered in consideration of the needs of those parents who have previously chosen the single vaccine route and wish their children to have measles boosters, but are not prepared to have the MMR vaccination. This service is only available to individuals who have received their first vaccines at the Harrow Health Care Centre.