UNICEF: Importance of childhood vaccines declined in Canada
Public awareness of the importance of routine childhood immunization has dropped 8% in Canada since before the pandemic, according to UNICEF.
Confidence in vaccination against diseases such as measles, polio and tetanus has declined in 52 of the 55 countries surveyed, according to a report issued by the agency.
The proportion of Canadians who believe childhood immunization is important has declined from 90% to 82% over the past three years.
Pediatric infectious disease expert Dr Cora Constantinescu said the UNICEF findings were significant.
She says both vaccine hesitation and disrupted access to routine immunizations are problems for Canada during the pandemic.
More than 80% of Canadians still believe vaccines are important, but Constantinescu said they weren’t enough to achieve comfortable levels of herd immunity against preventable childhood diseases. says.
She says there have been recent cases of measles, whooping cough, and meningococcal disease in various parts of Canada.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published on April 20, 2023.