Posted by Annie Urban
19 January 2011
The United States has a harmonized vaccination schedule that is used across the country. While parents can request an alternative schedule, the recommendations and standard procedures are the same nationwide. In Canada, however, the schedule is currently different in each of the provinces and territories.
The Canadian Pediatric Society (CPS) has been requesting a harmonized immunization schedule for quite some time and has issued a renewed call to action. According to CPS, the need for harmonization is critical because of the increasing schedule complexity, increased number of recommended vaccines, and increased movement of people from one part of the country to another. CPS is concerned that the divergent schedules will result in some children missing vaccinations due to schedule differences. Although not mentioned by CPS, the risk of children receiving double vaccinations may also be a risk. In addition to the safety factor, CPS also calls the current system inequitable, with children in some provinces having access to vaccinations that children in other provinces do not.