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Facts for Life

Immunization

Supporting Information

3.

It is safe to immunize a child who has a minor illness or a disability or is malnourished.

Many parents do not take a child to be immunized because the child has a fever, cough, cold, diarrhoea or some other illness. However, it is safe to immunize a child who has a minor illness.

It is also safe to immunize a child who has a disability or is malnourished. If a child is HIV-positive or suspected to be HIV-positive, a trained health worker should be consulted about which vaccines to give the child.

After an injection, the child may cry or develop a fever, a minor rash or a small sore. This is normal and shows that the vaccine is working. Children under 6 months of age should breastfeed frequently; older children should be given plenty of liquids and foods. If the child develops a high fever (over 38 degrees Celsius) the child should be taken to a trained health worker or health centre.

Measles can be extremely dangerous for malnourished children, so they should be immunized against measles, especially if the malnutrition is severe.