24 Oct 2013

Canterbury children given free jabs for hepatitis A

9:05 pm on 24 October 2013

More than 1000 pre-schoolers in mid-Canterbury have received free hepatitis A vaccinations following an outbreak that began in April this year.

Some 887 children aged over 12 months and under five years were vaccinated at six vaccination clinics, and 127 pre-schoolers were vaccinated at pre-school clinics.

The children come from Ashburton, Rakaia and Methven.

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Alistair Humphrey says the community is now well within a level of coverage that will prevent further spread.

Dr Humphrey says clinics need to vaccinate at least 120 more pre-schoolers to achieve 70% coverage.

The Canterbury District Health Board says there have been 28 confirmed cases in people ranging in age from 14 months to 53 years, with the last case notified on 28 August.