Ontario Public Health Standards

Vaccine Preventable Diseases

Goal

  • To reduce or eliminate the burden of vaccine preventable diseases.

Societal Outcomes

  • There is reduced incidence of vaccine preventable diseases.
  • Target coverage rates for vaccine preventable diseases are achieved.
  • There is increased health care provider knowledge of immunization.
  • There is increased public knowledge of immunization.
  • There is improved effectiveness of publicly funded immunization programs.
  • There is a reduced incidence rate of adverse events following immunization.
  • There is reduced vaccine wastage.

Board of Health Outcomes

  • The board of health achieves timely and effective detection and identification of children susceptible to vaccine preventable diseases, their associated risk factors, and emerging trends.
  • The board of health achieves timely and effective detection and identification of priority populations facing barriers to immunization, their associated risk factors, and emerging trends.
  • The board of health is aware of and uses epidemiology to influence the development of healthy public policy and its programs and services to reduce or eliminate the burden of vaccine preventable diseases.
  • The public is aware of the importance of immunization across the lifespan.
  • Health care providers report adverse events following immunization to the board of health.
  • Health care providers are knowledgeable of improved practices related to proper vaccine management, including storage and handling.
  • Target coverage rates for provincially funded immunizations are achieved.
  • The board of health effectively responds to vaccine preventable disease outbreaks.
  • The public is aware of the availability of travel health services, including immunizations for travellers.
  • Health care providers adhere to proper vaccine management, including storage and handling practices and inventory management.
  • Vaccines are distributed in an equitable and timely manner that adheres to proper vaccine management, including storage and handling practices.
  • The board of health achieves timely and effective detection and identification of adverse events following immunization.
  • Children have up-to-date immunizations according to the current Publicly Funded Immunization Schedules for Ontario and in accordance with the Immunization of School Pupils Act and the Child Care and Early Years Act.

Assessment and Surveillance

Requirements

  1. The board of health shall assess, maintain records and report, where applicable, on:
    • The immunization status of children enrolled in licensed child care programs as defined in the Child Care and Early Years Act;
    • The immunization status of children attending schools in accordance with the Immunization of School Pupils Act; and
    • Immunizations administered at board of health-based clinics as required

    in accordance with the Immunization Management Protocol, 2008 (or as current) [PDF] and the Infectious Diseases Protocol, 2008 (or as current).

  2. The board of health shall conduct epidemiological analysis of surveillance data, including monitoring of trends over time, emerging trends, and priority populations, in accordance with the Infectious Diseases Protocol, 2008 (or as current) and the Population Health Assessment and Surveillance Protocol, 2008 (or as current). [PDF]

Health Promotion and Policy Development

Requirements

  1. The board of health shall work with community partners to improve public knowledge and confidence in immunization programs by:
    1. Supplementing national and provincial health communications strategies; and/or
    2. Developing and implementing regional/local communications strategies.
    Topics to be addressed shall include:
    • The importance of immunization;
    • Diseases that vaccines prevent;
    • Recommended immunization schedules for children and adults and the importance of adhering to the schedules;
    • Introduction of new provincially funded vaccines;
    • Promotion of childhood and adult immunization, including high-risk programs;
    • The importance of maintaining a personal immunization record for all family members;
    • The importance of reporting adverse events following immunization;
    • Reporting immunization information to the board of health as required;
    • Vaccine safety; and
    • Legislation related to immunizations.
  2. The board of health shall promote the reporting of adverse events following immunization by health care providers to the local board of health in accordance with the Health Protection and Promotion Act.
  3. The board of health shall provide a comprehensive information and education strategy to promote optimal vaccine management, including storage and handling practices, among health care providers in accordance with the Vaccine Storage and Handling Protocol, 2008 (or as current). [PDF] This shall include:
    • One-on-one training at the time of cold chain inspection;
    • Distributing information to new health care providers who handle vaccines; and
    • Providing ongoing support to existing health care providers who handle vaccines.
  4. The board of health shall provide consultation to community partners to develop immunization policies (e.g., workplace policies) based on local need and as requested.

Disease Prevention

Requirements

  1. The board of health shall promote and provide provincially funded immunization programs to any eligible person in the health unit, including:
    • Board of health-based clinics;
    • School-based clinics (including but not limited to hepatitis B and meningococcal immunization);
    • Community-based clinics; and
    • Outreach clinics to priority populations.
  2. The board of health shall, as part of the Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program Standard, have a contingency plan to deploy board of health staff capable of providing vaccine preventable disease outbreak management and control such as mass immunization in the event of a community outbreak.
  3. The board of health shall provide or ensure the availability of travel health clinics.

Health Protection

Requirements

  1. The board of health shall ensure the storage and distribution of provincially funded vaccines including to health care providers practicing within the health unit in accordance with the Vaccine Storage and Handling Protocol, 2008 (or as current). [PDF]
  2. The board of health shall promote vaccine inventory management in all premises where provincially funded vaccines are stored in accordance with the Vaccine Storage and Handling Protocol, 2008 (or as current). [PDF]
  3. The board of health shall monitor, investigate, and document all suspected cases of adverse events following immunization that meet the provincial reporting criteria33 and promptly report all cases.
  4. The board of health shall comply with the Immunization Management Protocol, 2008 (or as current) [PDF], that specifies the process for the assessment of the immunization status of children in licensed day nurseries as defined in the Child Care and Early Years Act and the enforcement of the Immunization of School Pupils Act.

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33 The provincial reporting criteria are under development at the Federal/Provincial/Territorial level.

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