Which vaccinations in Calgary are administered to infants, and why

Vaccinations work to protect us from disease and viral infections that can impede our health, sometimes to a dangerous degree. As a general rule, it is always imperative to receive vaccines when you’re young to become immune. This is especially true when vaccinating infants and children, where vaccination will be crucial to a child’s development. Babies at any age are susceptible to contracting such illnesses, which can be highly detrimental to their health if they are unvaccinated. Babies should be vaccinated between 12 and 18 months of age to prevent sickness and build immunity early in life. While these vaccinations are imperative to get, many parents may question what vaccinations in Calgary their infants will need and why. 

Find out the vaccinations that infants need most, how they help in the early stages of life, and why they are imperative for each infant to receive. 

Hep B

Hep B is a vaccine that an infant will first receive within the first 24 hours of birth. Three doses of Hep B are required, the second vaccine will be administered at one or two months of age, and the third vaccine will be given to an infant between six and 18 months of age. This vaccination is needed to fight off serious infections that can result in more severe and chronic conditions later on in life. 

DTaP

This particular vaccine is typically given to an infant at two months, where it is vital in protecting a baby from diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis. These conditions can cause serious throat infections, the production of deadly bacteria and toxins, and violent coughing fits. This vaccine requires five doses that are doled out over a five-year period. 

Hib

The Haemophilus influenzae type B vaccine also referred to as Hib, is four doses doled out over the first year of an infant’s life. This vaccine will prevent illnesses and conditions that range in severity, including pneumonia, meningitis, and ear infections. 

IPV

The IPV vaccine, also known as the polio vaccine, is a four-part vaccine that is doled out over a four-year span. The first vaccine is administered at two months of age and will prevent a disease that can cause paralysis and permanent disability. 

PCV13

The pneumococcal vaccine requires four doses over a 15-month span, with the first vaccine being administered at two months of age. This vaccine will prevent bacteria from entering the lungs and causing severe conditions that eventually result in sepsis. Since infants have started to receive this vaccine, cases of infant meningitis and ear infections have reduced. 

RV

The rotavirus vaccine will prevent diarrhea and vomiting in children and other conditions associated with and can cause abdominal pain. This vaccine should be given to an infant starting at two months, and two other doses should be administered until six months of age. 

MMR

The MMR vaccine is given to an infant between the ages of 12 to 15 months of age, and a second dose is further administered between four and six years of age. This vaccine is imperative in protecting against measles, mumps, and rubella. Once the two doses are received, immunity against these illnesses remains for life. 

Chickenpox

The varicella vaccine protects against chickenpox and requires two doses, one for infants between the ages of 12 and 15 months and a second for children between four and six years old. 

Springborough Pharmasave is your health professionals committed to serving the Springborough community. Our pharmacy in SW Calgary will provide you with all the important services you need for your health, including healthcare advice and medical products. All our programs and services will be tailored to the needs of our consumers. We offer vaccinations, flu shots, breast pump rentals, and can act as your travel clinic in Calgary. Giving back to the community is a core value at Pharmasave, and we are proud of our work to help the Springborough community. Visit us at 104-30 Springborough Blvd, Southwest Calgary or call us on (403) 453-6113.   

As schools start to welcome students back for face-to-face classes after a long hiatus, there has been much talk about whether kids need the COVID vaccine. Besides, kids are known to have a stronger immune system than adults. However, it doesn’t mean they’re completely invincible since kids still get other vaccinations in Calgary. Here are a few reasons why kids need the COVID vaccine.

Why Kids Need COVID Vaccinations in Calgary for School 

Social Distancing Can’t be Followed

When COVID first popped up, health professionals advised everyone to keep a safe distance from others since we don’t know who had it. When you are at school, you can’t follow social distancing. It is such a small place, and your kids will eventually converse with the other kids there. It won’t be long before they play with each other as it has been a long time since their last opportunity. 

Symptoms are Less Severe

People who get vaccinations are less likely to get symptoms such as loss of taste and high fever. After a series of vaccinations, you will likely only experience a cough and cold. Then the virus will be gone after a few days. Gone are the days when you need to quarantine after travelling to another city or country. There is still the need to take medications for minor illnesses, but it won’t be that much. 

No Need to Worry About Other Vaccines

When you think about having your kids receive other vaccinations, that won’t be a problem when your kids just got the COVID vaccine. It is completely safe for your kids to receive additional vaccinations after receiving the COVID vaccine. However, you should still see a doctor, especially when you experience a few side effects. After all, the doctor would need to examine your family history before deciding. 

The Possibility of Getting COVID Again

Unlike other diseases, kids who got the virus before are not safe from getting it again. It is possible that they can get it, and the symptoms are much worse if you don’t get the vaccine. On the other hand, vaccinations will lessen the effect, so you don’t have to feel worried about your kids when they get sick.

Reduce Risk of Hospitalisation

When your kids get confined to the hospital because of COVID, it can not only compromise their long-term health but also have them running behind in their schoolwork. The longer they get confined, the further behind they are and, at worst, could put them more at risk if they’re already immuno-compromised. If you got the vaccinations, that would prevent such scenarios from occurring. 

If your kids have yet to get the vaccine, you best get them from a reliable source. Plenty of scams out there make it hard to keep track of the legitimate ones. When you get it from a clinic that offers a variety of health services, then you should feel confident the vaccinations will help your kids in the long run. 

Springborough Pharmasave is your health professionals committed to serving the Springborough community. Our pharmacy in SW Calgary provides you with all you need for your health, including healthcare advice and medical products. We offer vaccinations, flu shots, breast pump rentals, and can act as your travel clinic in Calgary. Giving back to the community is a core value at Pharmasave. Further, we are proud of our work to help the Springborough community. Visit us at 104-30 Springborough Blvd, Southwest Calgary, or call us at (403) 453-6113.

Vaccinations Calgary: Which COVID booster should I get?

As COVID-19 continues to captivate our undivided attention two years after it was made known to the world, questions regarding the vaccination and booster still swirl. It has been well established by medical professionals around the globe that receiving your COVID-19 vaccine can help protect you as well as others, and the booster is no exception in providing security. It has become paramount to protect yourself against this raging pandemic by masking when required and obtaining each dose of the vaccine, including the booster. Questions concerning the booster are still fresh, as many are unsure what type of booster they need and what ages are permitted to receive it. 

Learn more about vaccinations in Calgary, the COVID booster, what you should get, and what age groups are eligible to receive it. 

Vaccines and booster shots

A COVID-19 booster shot is necessary after someone has received each of their vaccines, as the effects of both doses of the vaccination begin to wane over time. The booster will give you half of the regular dosage you initially got to increase immune protection to combat the contagious virus. The differences between the vaccines were sufficient enough that you were supposed to receive the same dosage twice to avoid potential adverse effects. Because the booster isn’t made of the exact dosage as the first two vaccines, and since the waiting period to receive has been longer than the intervals in which people got their two vaccines, it doesn’t necessarily matter what booster shot you receive. 

Can you mix and match?

Mixing and matching your booster is not only permitted to do, but some medical professionals have exclaimed that it can potentially boost the immune system. Getting a different booster than the vaccine you received also creates more flexibility when scheduling your appointment to receive the booster shot. Advantages have been seen in those who have mixed their boosters shots as immunity can become more enhanced, particularly if you have received certain vaccinations that have less efficacy than, for example, Moderna and Pfizer. 

If you have questions about what booster will be most beneficial to your own health, you should contact your healthcare professional to navigate you in a suitable direction. 

A man receiving his COVID-19 booster vaccination from a healthcare professional
Is it permissible to mix and match the first two shots?

While mixing and matching the booster will do no harm and can be incredibly effective for the immune system, the same cannot be said for mixing and matching your first two COVID vaccine doses. Global health officials recommend that you receive two of the same vaccine dosage, whether that be Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, or Pfitzer until directed otherwise. 

Who is eligible to receive the third and fourth dose?

According to the government of Alberta, anyone over 12 can receive a booster vaccination if the proper amount of time has elapsed since a second dose–which is a minimum of five months. Immunocompromised children who are between the ages of 5-11 can also receive the booster shot a minimum of eight weeks after their second vaccination dose. As for the newly established fourth dose, all Albertans over 70 can receive their vaccinations in Calgary and immunocompromised people over 12 and Indigenous, Metis, and Inuit peoples over the age of 65 can also schedule an appointment to receive their fourth shot. 

Springborough Pharmasave is your health professionals committed to serving the Springborough community. Our pharmacy in SW Calgary will provide you with all the important services you need for your health, including healthcare advice and medical products. All our programs and services will be tailored to the needs of our consumers. We offer vaccinations, flu shots, breast pump rentals, and can act as your travel clinic in Calgary. Giving back to the community is a core value at Pharmasave, and we are proud of our work to help the Springborough community. Visit us at 104-30 Springborough Blvd, Southwest Calgary or call us on (403) 453-6113.

Whether you live in Calgary or St Johns, COVID remains in Canada and combating the virus means working together as a collective to ensure all of the necessary vaccinations have been received by the general public. Although you may be satisfied with your two COVID vaccinations, a third booster dose is highly recommended by medical experts. While going out of your way to receiving yet another vaccination dose may seem excessive, the COVID booster shot is helpful to fight the virus and maintain your health effectively. 

Find out more on why the COVID booster dose is required to keep you healthy and safe. 

What is the booster vaccination?

Booster shots are the third dosage of the vaccination you initially received. Getting the same vaccination three times will strengthen your immune system against the COVID virus. The booster shot has become increasingly important as the changing COVID virus churns out new variants that you are less protected against with only two vaccinations. The third dose will help protect you against some of the new variants that you can be much more susceptible to if you only have two vaccinations. 

How does the booster dose protect you?

As time goes on and your vaccination against the COVID virus begins to wane, getting your booster shot will help restrengthen your immune system to combat the COVID-19 virus effectively. Further, if your immune system is at all compromised or you’re elderly, getting your third dose should be administered for the best protection. This third dose will also lessen your chances of being hospitalized and dying due to the COVID-19 virus.

Is the booster effective against COVID and its variants?

Breakout infections do occur in fully vaccinated people where COVID can still be spread, but it appears that those who are fully vaccinated will spread the virus for a much shorter period of time. Being fully vaccinated, including receiving your booster, will reduce your chances of becoming sick from COVID-19 and its variants. While you won’t be immune to COVID with your vaccines, you will still minimize potential health issues from COVID and reduce the rates of transmission from the COVID and the Delta variant once you have received all three vaccinations. The third dose is further recommended by Canada’s National Committee on Immunization (CNCI). They explicitly state the booster shot will increase the immune response to the virus and offer long-lasting protection against COVID and its prevalent variants. 

Who should get the booster dose

Four to six months after you have received your second vaccination, you are eligible to get your booster shot. While everyone over the age of five in most provinces can and should get the booster shot, those with underlying health conditions need to receive the third dose. For those working in healthcare, living in long-term care facilities, or are 70 years of age and older, getting the third dose can be extremely helpful to combat COVID and its hazardous symptoms.

Expect more doses

The third vaccination dose will significantly enhance your immune’s abilities to fight against COVID. But as new and more transmittable variants emerge, you should expect more vaccine doses to come that will continue to help combat the COVID virus. If you have yet to get your third dose and received your two vaccines more than six months prior, you should book a scheduled time at your local pharmacy to get your booster shot!

Springborough Pharmasave is your health professionals committed to serving the Springborough community. Our pharmacy in SW Calgary will provide you with all the important services you need for your health, including healthcare advice and medical products. All our programs and services will be tailored to the needs of our consumers. We offer vaccinations, flu shots, breast pump rentals, and can act as your travel clinic in Calgary. Giving back to the community is a core value at Pharmasave, and we are proud of our work to help the Springborough community. Visit us at 104-30 Springborough Blvd, Southwest Calgary or call us on (403) 453-6113.

The past two years have accumulated into a constant stream of information about COVID, vaccines, and the varying levels of restrictions. With restrictions being extended or reduced both provincially and nationally, it can be challenging to gauge what is permissible—especially if you have pending travel plans. 

Here is everything you need to know about COVID, the vaccines, and travelling.

Vaccinate beforehand

To adequately prevent catching COVID, or passing the virus to someone else, the government of Canada strongly recommends getting two COVID vaccines and a booster shot if able. According to the government of Canada involving vaccines, travelling outside of the country will garner various restrictions depending on the country you enter and your vaccine status. You are also strongly advised to take precautions before leaving, like receiving the appropriate number of vaccinations at least two weeks before you jet off. Most airlines will not allow you if you are unvaccinated and travelling internationally or domestically. Few vaccine exemptions are permitted on a flight, but such exceptions should be researched carefully if they apply to you. 

Precautions to take

When you are at your destination, make sure to wear a well-fitted mask in every public place you visit and bring your proof of vaccination. If you feel sick before you leave or after, isolating yourself away from others is another strong recommendation from the Canadian Government–even if you’re vaccinated. Constantly monitoring your general health and wellbeing as you travel can help identify if something feels off so you can isolate and take a COVID test. 

While you monitor your own health, understanding the ongoing COVID situation within your destination as you plan your travels can determine whether or not it is safe and viable to proceed with your plans. The Canadian Government guidelines advise locating the medical services within your destination, along with the Canadian embassy, and looking into acquiring travellers insurance, all of which can make for the safest possible trip. 

 Returning to Canada

Much like before you travel to your destination, travelling back to Canada is unadvised if you feel ill and actively experience COVID symptoms or have been in close contact with someone else who has symptoms. If you are on the flight back to Canada and begin to experience symptoms, you are required under Canada’s quarantine act to contact a quarantine officer as soon as you’re able.

ArriveCAN

The government of Canada has mandated the use of ArriveCAN, an online resource that can be used on a laptop and smartphone. AriveCAN applies to anyone who is not vaccinated, and for those who are, an exception can be made if you have proof of vaccination on hand. If not, information must be provided to ArriveCAN within 72 hours of arriving in Canada. Without using ArriveCAN, unvaccinated Canadians can be subjected to border delays and fines. 

Safe Travelling

There is no confirmed way to be spared from COVID, but taking necessary precautions can surely help. Washing your hands, wearing a mask, and most importantly, getting your vaccinations can relieve worry before you begin to travel. Learning more about the COVID vaccination and how it can prevent COVID can ensure your safe travels in the future. 

Springborough Pharmasave is your health professional committed to serving the Springborough community. Our pharmacy in SW Calgary provides you with all you need for your health, including healthcare advice and medical products. We offer vaccinations, flu shots, breast pump rentals, and can act as your travel clinic in Calgary. Giving back to the community is a core value at Pharmasave. Further, we are proud of our work to help the Springborough community. Visit us at 104-30 Springborough Blvd, Southwest Calgary, or call us at (403) 453-6113.

Immunity to a disease is achieved by possessing antibodies to said disease in a body. Antibodies are specific to a single disease, so while you may have antibodies against chickenpox, they will be useless against mumps.

 

You are able to achieve immunity to a disease in two different ways: passively and actively. Let’s take a look at how the two methods differ from each other.

 

Understanding The Difference Between Active & Passive Immunity

 

Active Immunity

 

Active immunity occurs when our own immune system is responsible for protecting us against a pathogen. This is the most common form of immunity that our bodies rely on. Active immunity is created when we are exposed to potentially harmful pathogens and our immune system works to neutralize them.

 

It’s important to note that not every pathogen is as dangerous and dire as the more troublesome diseases. From the air we breathe to the surfaces we touch, we are constantly coming into contact with pathogens. Our immune system determines whether they are harmful to our bodies, which, more often or not, they are not. 

 

Active immunity relies on our immune system’s long-term memory, also known as immunologic memory. Essentially, these memory cells are constantly on patrol, circulating through our bodies. When they spot a pathogen whose access has not been approved, they converge on the pathogen while calling in backup. Since immunological memory allows antibodies to remember which pathogens they are designed to attack, they are able to take on the pathogens without confusion or delay.

Herd Immunity handwritten on Blackboard

Vaccines are also a form of active immunity. Sometimes we want our bodies to develop antibodies to a disease without having to interact with the pathogens first. When a vaccine is injected into our bodies, our immune system’s first instinct is to attack it, as it is foreign to us. However, since vaccines are designed to not actually harm our bodies, we actually gain the benefits of the exposure. Essentially, our antibodies are given the chance to train and participate in a trial run, familiarizing themselves with how the pathogen should look. That way, our antibodies are prepared for if the disease actually enters the body.

 

Passive Immunity

 

While everyone has experienced passive immunity at one point in their lives, this type of immunity is short-lived. 

 

The most common type of passive immunity is through maternal antibodies. Unborn and newborn babies are protected by antibodies from their mother’s own immune system. These antibodies are shared in two ways: breast milk and the placenta. Naturally, once the baby is no longer exposed to either of these, the passive immunity will come to an end.

 

Another example of passive immunity is using antibodies from animals, other people, or synthetic materials to treat against the risk of infection. If you were to be bit by a poisonous snake, you would require an antivenom. This is a mixture of antibodies that have already been trained to deal with snake venom. However, once these particular antibodies have performed their job, they will cease to exist.

 


Springborough Pharmasave is your health professionals committed to serving the Springborough community. Our pharmacy in SW Calgary provides you with all you need for your health, including healthcare advice and medical products. We offer vaccinations, flu shots, breast pump rentals, and can act as your travel clinic in Calgary. Giving back to the community is a core value at Pharmasave. Further, we are proud of our work to help the Springborough community. Visit us at 104-30 Springborough Blvd, Southwest Calgary, or call us at (403) 453-6113.

Nearly a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, Canada began approving vaccines for use in Canada. Now, we have several options to choose from when it comes to the COVID-19 vaccines

 

Let’s take a look at which ones are available in Canada.

 

The Four Types of COVID Vaccines in Canada

 

Pfizer-BioNTech

The first vaccine approved for Canadian consumption was Pfizer-BioNTech. Clinical studies have shown that one week after the second shot, the vaccine is:

 

  • 95% effective in protecting trial participants 16 years and older against COVID-19
  • 100% effective in trial participants that are 12 to 15 years of age

 

This vaccine requires two doses, meaning Canadians will have to return for a follow-up appointment to get their second shot.

 

Health Canada has approved this vaccine for anyone over the age of twelve. The safety and effectiveness in people younger than this have yet to be determined.

 

Janssen (Johnson & Johnson)

Also known as the J&J vaccine, this option was approved by Health Canada in March of 2021. It has proven to be 66% effective against COVID-19 once two weeks have passed from the time of the injection.

 

The Janssen vaccine only requires one dose, meaning those selected to receive this vaccine only need to make one appointment.

 

This vaccine is allowed to be given to people 18 years of age or older. The safety and effectiveness in people younger than this have yet to be established.

 

AstraZeneca

Health Canada authorized the AstraZeneca vaccine in February of 2021. This vaccine has an effectiveness rate of 62% against COVID-19 once two weeks have passed from the time the second dose was administered.

 

Two doses are required for maximum effectiveness, so those Canadians who receive AstraZeneca will need to make a follow-up appointment to receive their second shot.

Mother taking care of baby with chicken pox

This vaccine has been approved for those 18 years of age and older. The safety and effectiveness in people younger than this have yet to be confirmed.

 

Moderna

Moderna was the second COVID-19 vaccine to be approved by Canada Health back in December of 2020. It has proven to be 94.1% effective two weeks after the second dose is given.

 

This vaccine is most effective after two doses, so a follow-up appointment will need to be made to receive your second shot.

 

Moderna has been approved for those 18 years of age and older. The safety and effectiveness in people younger than 18 have yet to be determined.

 

Canada Health recommends taking whichever vaccine becomes available to you first. However, your doctor may suggest a specific type of vaccine for you.

 


Springborough Pharmasave is your health professionals committed to serving the Springborough community. Our pharmacy in SW Calgary provides you with all you need for your health, including healthcare advice and medical products. We offer vaccinations, flu shots, breast pump rentals, and can act as your travel clinic in Calgary. Giving back to the community is a core value at Pharmasave. Further, we are proud of our work to help the Springborough community. Visit us at 104-30 Springborough Blvd, Southwest Calgary, or call us at (403) 453-6113.

When it comes to manufacturing a cure for COVID-19, it might take several years for it to be created, and for the results to work as expected. It could take even longer for the herd immunity to occur, considering the extent of which vaccinations in Calgary can be available. 


What is herd immunity, though? And why is it important? This blog breaks down the importance of herd immunity and how it relates to the COVID-19 crisis. 


What is Herd Immunity? 


In basic terms, herd immunity occurs when most of the population is immune to an infectious disease, thereby providing protection – or herd immunity – to those that are not immune to the disease. 


Some classic examples in which herd immunity works is with measles, mumps, polio, and chickenpox. These diseases were once common and highly contagious. But due to the availability of a vaccine, herd immunity has been established. While cases might still occur, due to a large number of protected individuals, the virus does not spread as quickly. 


Overall, usually between 70% to 90% of a population needs immunity against the virus for herd immunity to be achieved. 


What are the Challenges for Herd Immunity? 


The rule for herd immunity is that the more infectious a disease, the higher the population immunity needs to be to ensure herd immunity. Take, for example, measles, which is considered highly contagious. To achieve herd immunity, you need 95% of the popular to be immune. 


CoronaVirus


Simultaneously, given the high numbers in which people can be affected by a new disease (such as COVID-19), it might be challenging to achieve this global immunity because the cases of infected people keep getting higher and higher. 


Even when vaccines are available, particular viruses such as the flu mutate over time, so the antibodies from the previous infection only last for a period of time. It is why it is always recommended to go to a flu shot clinic in Calgary before winter to protect yourself against it. 


What About COVID-19? 


Being that COVID-19 has similar strains to the flu and is as infectious as the measles, the future is unclear in regards to herd immunity. It can be difficult for a vaccination to be created in which it protects people for an extended period of time as it has similar strains to the flu (as additional shots might be required, as the vaccine might have to be adapted). Considering the high numbers, it can take a long time for herd immunity to be achieved. 


The upside is that we must remain vigilant against the virus and protect ourselves at all costs. Wear face masks, sanitize yourself often and adhere to social distancing rules. It is also advisable to get all your flu shots and vaccinations from your trusted compounding pharmacy in SW Calgary to protect yourself against all other viruses. 


Springborough Pharmasave is your health professionals committed to serving the Springborough community. Our pharmacy in SW Calgary provides you with all you need for your health, including healthcare advice and medical products. We offer vaccinations, flu shots, breast pump rentals, and can act as your travel clinic in Calgary. Giving back to the community is a core value at Pharmasave. Further, we are proud of our work to help the Springborough community. Visit us at 104-30 Springborough Blvd, Southwest Calgary, or call us at (403) 453-6113