Immunisation and Illness

Immunisations and Illnesses

Immunisation is the best way to protect babies, children and adults from a wide range of serious and sometimes fatal diseases.   Immunisation programmes also benefit the wider community by eradicating or reducing the incidence of vaccine preventable diseases.  Age appropriate immunisation for children provides the most effective protection for the whole community.  The majority of immunisations take place in infancy however the protective effects continue beyond childhood and into adulthood.

If you are working with children and families you are encouraged to reflect on how your setting provides positive messages to parents about the NHS routine childhood immunisation programmes and how well equipped you are to support parents who have concerns about immunisation’s, including signposting them to health professionals to discuss these topics further.  The key health messages you should aim to convey about childhood vaccination are that vaccination saves lives and the benefits of immunising children significantly outweigh any perceived or possible risks.


Further information and resources:

The resources and information on this page are to support you with promoting uptake of immunisations to families. There are some good sources of information on NHS Choices including videos that can be shared with parents/carers. You can also order free leaflets from the Department of Health order line in a range of languages.

The current immunisations schedule:

Download a new practical guide for staff on managing cases of infectious diseases in schools and other childcare settings here.  This guidance provides advice on:

  • preventing the spread of infections.
  • which diseases to vaccinate for.
  • how long to keep children away from early years setting or school.
  • managing infectious diseases.
  • cleaning the environment.

Reporting notifiable diseases – if you need to report a notifiable disease, please contact the Public Health England Avon, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire Health Protection Team: 0300 303 8162 (option 1, then option 2).

Immunisation Training

Handi App

The HANDi App aims to provide advice and support to parents and carers when children are unwell. It offers simple and straightforward advice on what to do and who to contact, including illness-specific home assessment guidelines for six common childhood illnesses:

  • Diarrhoea and vomiting
  • High temperature
  • Chesty baby (Bronchiolitis)
  • Chesty child (Wheeze and Asthma)
  • Abdominal pain
  • Common newborn problems

You can download the HANDi App for Android phones at or if you have an iPhone or iPad you can download it from

MMR film – created in collaboration Somali young adults

Bristol City Council have collaborated with Caafi Health to produce a short film about measles, mumps and rubella and the MMR vaccine.

Sickness absence

According to the Office of National Statistics (ONS), in 2016, 137 million working days were lost in the UK due to sickness or injury.

Sickness absence advice and information

Immunisations and illness

Download a new practical guide for staff on managing cases of infectious diseases in schools and other childcare settings here.