The Ministry of Health provides immunization services at no charge to citizens of Trinidad and Tobago through the Extended Programme on Immunization. The Ministry’s goal is to have every citizen of Trinidad and Tobago fully immunized. Free vaccines are provided to prevent the following diseases: The Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) is a joint effort of the World Health Organization (WHO), Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the Ministry of Health of Trinidad and Tobago.
The Philosophy of the EPI Unit is that every child should be immunized against vaccine preventable diseases.
The vision of the organization is to identify and completely immunize all infants, children, pregnant women and men as early as possible, in accordance with a national immunization schedule.
The mission of the Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) Medical Services is to eradicate, eliminate or reduce vaccine preventable diseases to the lowest levels possible through sustained IMMUNIZATION of all susceptible persons as an essential component of Primary Health Care.
The purpose of the EPI Unit is to prevent morbidity and mortality from vaccine preventable diseases. The Ministry’s goal is to have every citizen of Trinidad and Tobago fully immunized. Free vaccines are provided to prevent the following diseases:
- Tuberculosis (TB)
- Measles (Rubeola)
- Mumps (Parotitis)
- Rubella (German Measles)
- Viral Hepatitis B
- Haemophilus Influenzae type b
- Yellow Fever
- Pneumococcal Disease
- Varicella (Chicken Pox)
- Rotavirus Enteritis
- Meningococcal Disease
- Viral Hepatitis A
When you are vaccinated you are given an immunization card, also known as the Vaccination Card or Health Passport. Vaccines expire and must therefore be updated at the intervals indicated by your health care professional. Your vaccination card will be updated as you receive additional vaccines. The immunization card is an extremely important document as it is a requirement for children to be enrolled in schools.
Where can I get immunized?
Vaccinations are done by appointment at all Health Centres on days scheduled for immunization. Health Centres usually schedule one or two days per week for immunizations. Please contact a health centre near you to find out their immunization schedule. Please follow the link below for a list of health centres. You may also be vaccinated by private medical practitioners. Please note that general hospitals only administer Tetanus vaccines. You should not visit a hospital for routine vaccinations.
What vaccines do I need?
The vaccines you need are determined by your age. When a child is born, a referral is given to a community Health Centre by the hospital or health care professional. A nurse at the Health Centre will visit the child and mother during the six weeks following birth, during which an appointment will be given for the parent or caregiver to bring the infant in for assessment. At age six weeks, an assessment is done at the Health Centre and another appointment is made to administer the child’s first vaccines, at age three months. The child will be given subsequent appointments at the Health Centre, during the appropriate clinic days, in accordance with the immunization schedule below. Children are monitored at the Health Centre up to five years of age. Adults and children over the age of five must arrange to be immunized at a Health Centre or through a private medical practitioner.
|Age||Immunization to be given against||Vaccine|
|3 months||Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Hepatitis B infection, Haemophilus Influenzae type b, Poliomyelitis||Pentavalent (DPT / Hep B / Hib) Attenuated trivalent oral poliomyelitis vaccine (OPV)|
|4 -5 months||Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Hepatitis B infection, Haemophilus Influenzae type b, Poliomyelitis V||Pentavalent (DPT / Hep B / Hib)|
|6 months||Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Hepatitis B infection, Haemophilus Influenzae type b, Poliomyelitis||Pentavalent (DPT / Hep B / Hib)|
|12-15 months||Measles, Mumps, Rubella Yellow Fever||Combined Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) Attenuated Yellow Fever vaccine|
|18 months||Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Poliomyelitis||Booster DPT OPV|
|5 years||Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Poliomyelitis Measles, Mumps, Rubella||Boosters DPT OPV MMR|
|9-12 years||Diphtheria, Tetanus, Yellow Fever||Tetanus, Diphtheria (Td), Yellow Fever vaccine|
|19-45 years||MMR, Hep B|
|Pre-Natal for Mothers||Neonatal Tetanus, Tetanus||Td (Adult Tetanus, Diphtheria)|
|Post-Natal for Mothers||Rubella||MMR|
What documentation do I need?
You may be required to provide identification when you visit the Health Centre (passport, I.D. card or driver’s permit).
Where can I find more information?
You may find more information on immunization at the Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI).
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