New immunisation resource for primary care

Hon Dr Jonathan Coleman

Minister of Health

17 December 2015

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says a new resource will support midwifes, nurses and doctors to inform parents about infant immunisation.

“New Zealand’s infant immunisation rate for eight month olds has increased significantly in recent years to almost 94 per cent. Support from midwifes, nurses and doctors has been an important factor in this increase,” says Dr Coleman.

“The Ministry of Health has been working with the Immunisation Advisory Centre, the College of Midwifes and the Health Promotion Agency to develop the discussion guide ‘Let’s talk about immunisation’.

“Midwifes are a trusted source of health information for expectant parents, and this resource is designed with them in mind.

“The new resource contains information about immunisation for pregnant women as well as babies – maternal immunisation is important for protecting mums from influenza and babies from whooping cough until they are old enough to have their first immunisation at age six weeks.

“Ministry of Health research suggests a lack of accessible information about the safety and effectiveness of immunisation for pregnant women is a barrier for improving maternal immunisation rates.”

Maternal immunisation rates are increasing. In 2013 a survey of 160 pregnant women following the influenza campaign found that 40 per cent were immunised against influenza. This year a similar survey found that 59 per cent were immunised.

The new resource will be distributed to all midwifes and general practices in early January. A powerpoint version is also being developed for use in antenatal classes.

Media contact: Kirsty Taylor-Doig 021 838 372



Last updated: Thursday, December 17, 2015

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