Vaccines & Immunizations 

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Importance of Immunization

Vaccines are used to safely help the immune system to develop a response to protect the body from disease. They are used to immunize against many diseases and illnesses that could be serious or even fatal without this protection. Vaccines are given by a schedule throughout the lifespan to ensure ongoing protection. Learn more about immunization

Immunization is necessary for two reasons:

  • to protect the individual and to protect communities. Vaccines protect an entire population by preventing the spread of disease from one individual to another;
  • the more people immunized, the less chance for disease to circulate.

The best protection comes from being vaccinated according to the Ontario schedule.   

Staying up to date with all doses of vaccines is important for each age and stage of life.  

To learn more about how, and when, to get vaccinated to protect against preventable diseases, please visit Ministry of Health and Long Term Care - Vaccines and immunization

Vaccination is the best way to protect your child's health. 

Parents are responsible for the well-being of their children, including protecting them from illness caused by diseases that are vaccine-preventable. Learn about vaccination and why it is important to your child's health, A Parent's Guide to Vaccination. Learn more about the diseases that vaccines can protect you against by reading Vaccine-preventable Disease Fact Sheets.

Every year, public health nurses look at the records for students in licensed child cares, elementary and secondary schools. This is done to make sure students are up to date with vaccines in order to ensure the health of everyone attending.

Children Attending Child Care

Licenced child care operators in Ontario are responsible for keeping a record of immunization on file for all children enrolled in their care (Child Care & Early Years Act Ontario). Health Units are responsible for assessing the immunization status of children in child care centres to ensure they are up-to-date with their immunizations, or have a valid exemption. Parents are responsible for following the Publicly Funded Immunization Schedule for Ontario, maintaining a current copy of their children’s records and sharing it with their Child Care Provider. Your child care operator works with the Timiskaming Health Unit to ensure your record is regularly assessed and up-to-date.


Immunization in Child Care Information Sheet (R-127a-CDC)

Vaccine Requirements for School

Vaccines are a safe and effective way to keep children healthy. Diseases are easily spread among children and can cause serious illness and complications. Schools are places in which infectious diseases are commonly spread. Vaccines work by triggering a natural response in the body to fight off disease. It is important for children of this age to be up-to-date with their vaccinations.

All health units in Ontario are responsible for ensuring that children who attend school are immunized according to the Immunization of School Pupils Act.

Public health nurses review all students immunization records. If your child is missing any requirements, you will receive notification by letter. Your child could be suspended from school if their immunizations are not up-to-date, or if their immunization records are incomplete.

Let's work together to keep our children healthy and our schools disease-free.

See Immunization Information for Children at School for more information. 

Pregnant Women

It is important to talk to your health care provider to find out if you require any vaccinations during your pregnancy. For more information visit:

Vaccines and Records

Every time that you or your child receives an immunization, you should receive a record of that vaccine. Keep that information in a safe place. Your health care provider can write vaccines into the record for you, and you should keep the card with you as your personal record.

Please note: Health care professionals do not report immunization dates to the Health Unit. Parents must report the dates of their children's immunizations to the Health Unit if they attend day care or school.

Please see Immunization Records (Yellow Card) for easy access to viewing and updating your records.

Vaccine Clinics

Timiskaming Health Unit provides vaccines in a variety of settings for individuals who are eligible. See Immunization Clinics

Travel Health 

As the Timiskaming Health Unit (THU) strives to meet the requirements stipulated by the Ontario Public Health Standards (OPHS) and to better align with other public health services across the province, effective September 30, 2023, THU will no longer offer travel vaccine to the district. 

Planning a trip?

Travelling outside of Canada? You may require immunizations depending on your destination, the length of your stay, and whether or not your routine immunizations are up-to-date.

To facilitate continued access to travel vaccines, we encourage clients to discuss with their local pharmacy, health care providers or seek services from travel clinics. 

Before you leave - book a Travel Health appointment

As a reminder, immunizations can take several weeks to protect you against a disease. You should consider this when planning for travel and schedule your travel vaccine six to eight weeks before your trip to allow enough time for the vaccine or immunizing agent to take effect.

For more information on Travel Vaccines, please visit: 

While you are travelling

If you get sick when you are travelling and require medical assistance, visit the Government of Canada's site for instructions and recommendations for Canadian travellers.

When you return home

Some diseases, such as malaria, may not become apparent until after you return from your trip. Visit a health care provider if you develop any signs of illness, especially within the first two months of your return and inform them of your travel history.

It's also important to complete your series of vaccines when you return so you are ready for your next trip.

Travelling the world is fun, but it’s important to be aware of the different hazards you may not be used to living in Northern Ontario. Different diseases not found here including tropical diseases, political unrest, different laws, dangerous wildlife, different climate – even standards of living and basic health care services can vary widely from country to country and region to region.

External Links

Travel Health Notices (Public Health Agency of Canada)

Country Travel Advice and Advisories (Government of Canada)

Committee to Advise on Tropical Medicine and Travel (CATMAT)

Travelling Outside of Canada – Fact Sheet (Ministry of Health and Long-Term Car…

Travel and Tourism (Government of Canada)

Travel Smart App (Government of Canada)

Vaccines. Medicine. Advice. (US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)