Updated February 2017
Vaccine Safety Is Important to All of Us
Vaccines create immunity to protect us all from serious diseases. Vaccines work best when all children are immunized on time.
Canada Has One of the Best Vaccine Safety Programs
There is a strong system in place to monitor the safety of vaccines. Every single batch of vaccine is tested according to strict guidelines for safety and quality before it is used. After vaccines are given, severe reactions are monitored by public health at the local, provincial and national level.
The risk of serious reactions from vaccines is very small in comparison to the diseases they protect us from. But like all medication, side effects can occur. Many of the side effects are minor and only lasts for a few days, like a sore arm or mild fever. On rare occasions, a severe allergic reaction may occur (anaphylaxis). The chance of a serious reaction is about one in every one million doses of vaccine given.
We All Play a Role in Keeping Vaccines Safe
After vaccination, stay at the clinic for 15 minutes. Most serious reactions occur right after getting the vaccine and are treated immediately.
After the vaccination, watch your child for any reactions like:
- high fever (40°C or higher)
- allergic reactions (rash or hives)
- unusual fussing or crying
- unusually low energy or sleepiness
- severe vomiting or diarrhea
- severe swelling where the needle went in
If you noticed any changes in your child’s health, call your healthcare provider. You can also contact us to ask questions or to report a severe reaction. 416-392-1250.
Toronto Public Health takes all complaints seriously. By reporting adverse events, potential safety issues can be identified early, to lessen any health effects on people who need vaccines.