European Immunisation Week is led by the World Health Organization (WHO) with the objective to increase awareness of the importance of immunisation throughout life to help build and sustain herd immunity in all communities.
In Scotland, thanks to the Scottish Immunisation Programme, we have excellent uptake rates for the vaccines offered to all babies and children, protecting our most vulnerable people from serious diseases. However, there is lower uptake of some vaccines among other eligible groups across the life course – teenagers, pregnant women and older people. People living in poorer areas, who may be at greater risk of diseases and illnesses that immunisation can prevent, are least likely to take up the offer of vaccines.
NHS Health Scotland provides a range of print and online resources describing what happens at appointments, the benefits of immunisation, side effects and other important information. It includes leaflets in a variety of languages and in easy-to-read format, video clips for relevant target audiences, and the shingles eligibility calculator for people aged 70 years and over. NHS Health Scotland also hosts and updates the national immunisation website for the public.