Vaccination for children in Singapore starts as soon as they’re born.
An immunisation schedule is followed to ensure babies and little children are protected once antibodies from their mothers and breastfeeding begin to wane.
Babies are most vulnerable to illnesses as their immune systems are still developing. And delaying the vaccines for too long may increase the chances of them developing adverse reactions.
Importance of childhood vaccination in Singapore
Children going to physical schools benefit a lot from vaccines. They’re exposed to crowds regularly, and anyone can become a carrier of infectious diseases.
Being fully vaccinated reduces the risks of contracting diseases and spreading them within their household and other areas they frequent.
It also gives parents peace of mind as children explore and learn more about their surroundings.
What are vaccine exemptions?
Getting vaccines is highly encouraged anywhere. It not only protects an individual, but it also protects the community, especially those who cannot receive vaccines.
Vaccine exemption rules or laws vary around the world. If the vaccine exemption rate is high, that means more children or individuals go unvaccinated. And if several children don’t receive vaccines, the higher the chances of them getting sick too.
Depending on where you are, it may be easier or harder to become exempted from getting vaccines.
Common reasons for vaccine exemptions
Reasons for vaccine exemptions vary, but here are some of the most common ones:
- Health conditions. Some children are unable to receive vaccines as they have medical conditions or are taking medications that weaken their immune system.
- Allergic reactions. Some children may also become exempted from getting vaccinated as they have allergic reactions to the vaccine or any of its ingredients. Side effects or adverse reactions to vaccines are rare.
- Previous reactions. A child may also become exempted if they developed serious reactions to vaccines they previously received.
- Religious exemptions. Some religions also discourage or prohibit their members from receiving certain vaccines.
If you believe your child is unfit to receive vaccines, consult with your physician. Look for a family doctor that you trust so you can express your concerns and thoughts comfortably.
Children must receive vaccines they need in the recommended schedule. Your child may be exempted if health professionals determine that inoculations can compromise their health.
Be sure to coordinate with the Ministry of Health for clarifications and the next steps you need to take related to vaccination for children in Singapore.
Can my child go to school in Singapore without vaccines?
Child vaccination is a priority in Singapore, and some vaccines are compulsory. Examples of these are smallpox, diphtheria, and measles. Non-compliance comes with a penalty.
Singapore citizens receive certain vaccines for free while Permanent Residents can receive them with a discount. There may be instances when a child cannot receive vaccinations. During such situations, your child may be able to go to school even without vaccines.
Many schools require an immunisation record as proof that your child is up-to-date with necessary vaccinations before enrolment. You’ll need to secure certifications first if your child still does not have it and update their records with the Ministry of Health.