The Integral Guide for Pediatric Vaccines in UAE
Pediatric vaccines can be confusing and stressful. But, vaccinating your child from deadly diseases is the kindest thing you can do for him/her.
For your child to have a normal childhood and embark on a proper journey of development you have to offer him with the proper vaccination in the suggested schedule.
In this article, we will discuss the mandatory vaccinations in the United Arab Emirates and the importance of immunization for your child’s safety and health.
A vaccine is made from very small amounts or parts of germs (viruses, bacteria, toxins) that can be pathogenic and cause diseases. This germ can be dead or weakened so they cannot cause the disease.
They are products that prepare your body to fight the disease by stimulating your immune system. When the weakened or dead germ reaches the immune system, your body produces antibodies against this germ making you immune to it.
Vaccines are one of the most powerful medical therapies invented. They are considered one of the biggest public health victories in history. Unlike most medicines, which treat or cure diseases, vaccines prevent them.
Vaccines can be administered through different methods and routes. Most vaccines are given by injection (needle) but some are given orally (by mouth) or nasally (sprayed into the nose).
Our immune system is our natural defense mechanism against deadly diseases. It fights pathogens and protects us. Immunity is the body’s ability to prevent diseases from occurring.
When we are born, our immune system is not fully developed, which puts infants at a greater risk for infections. Vaccines reduce your child’s risk of infection by working with his/her body’s natural defenses to safely develop immunity to disease.
Your child is every day exposed to dangerous pathogens and without immunization, those pathogens could be deadly. It is always better to prevent a disease than to treat it after it occurs.
Taking care of the required childhood vaccinations is essential because it helps provide immunity before children are exposed to potentially life-threatening diseases.
Vaccines can prevent infectious diseases that once killed or harmed many infants, children, and adults. Without vaccines, your child is at risk for getting seriously ill and suffering pain, disability, and even death from diseases like measles and whooping cough.
Vaccinations offer a highly effective, safe and easy way to keep your family healthy. Vaccines are tested to ensure that they are safe and effective for children to receive at the recommended ages.
Every country has its own immunization schedules and guidelines, so depending on where you live, you'll have to give your child the appropriate vaccinations.
The reason behind these variations is that in some areas the susceptibility of getting certain infections is higher. For example, the risk of getting Tuberculosis (TB) in the United Arab Emirates is higher than in many other countries, so it’s recommended for all babies to receive immunisation against TB in the first few days of birth.
“The UAE Government mandates vaccinations to children from the time they are born to the time they reach Grade 11.” - Based on national vaccination guidelines.
Mandatory vaccinations prevent the following diseases:
- BCG: Bacillus, Calmette-Guerin (against tuberculosis)
- DPT: Diphtheria, Pertussis and Tetanus
- Hep B: Hepatitis B
- Hexavalent: DTaP, Hib, Hep B and IPV
- Hib: Haemophilus Influenzae Type B
- HPV: Human Papillomavirus
- IPV: Inactivated Poliovirus Vaccine
- MMR: Measles, Mumps and Rubella
- OPV: Oral Poliovirus Vaccine
- PCV: Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine
- Pentavalent: DPT, Hib and Hep B
- Tdap: Tetanus, reduced Diphtheria and reduced Pertussis
- Tetravalent: DTaP and Hib.
UAE Pediatric Vaccination Schedule
- UAE Vaccinations at Birth:
After the baby is born, he/she receives BCG and first dose of Hepatitis B vaccine (HBV or Hep B).
- UAE vaccinations at 2 months old:
The baby receives Polio vaccines (IPV/OPV), and the first dose of Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis (whooping cough) vaccines (DTaP). Also, the first dose of Haemophilus influenzae type B vaccine (Hib) and Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV); and the second dose of HBV vaccine.
- UAE vaccinations at 4 months
The infant receives the mandatory third dose of HBV vaccines and the second doses of:
- UAE vaccinations at 6 months
The baby receives additional doses of IPV/OPV & DTaP, Hib, PCV and HBV vaccines.
- UAE vaccinations at 12 months
This phase requires administration of the first dose of MMR vaccine (Measles, Mumps, and Rubella “German measles”) and Chickenpox/Varicella vaccines.
- UAE vaccinations for older children:
- 18 months old: Booster shots are given.
- 11-12 years old: Td/ Tdap for those who have completed the recommended childhood DTP/DTaP vaccination series. Also, meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MCV4) or meningococcal polysaccharide vaccine (MPSV4) at age 11-12 years and at age 13-18 years if not previously vaccinated.
- Hepatitis B 3-dose series to those who were not previously vaccinated.
- Varicella 2 doses series if not previously immunized.
11-16 years old: The Human Papillomavirus Vaccine is recommended for girls.