Immunization has saved more lives in Canada in the last 50 years than any other health measure.
Immunizations, also known as vaccinations, are important for people of all ages. They help your immune system recognize and quickly kill bacteria and viruses that can cause serious illness or death. By getting immunized, you not only protect yourself and your family, but others as well. Many vaccines are provided free as part of your child's routine immunizations. To learn more about routine immunizations, travel immunizations and more, click on the links below.
Childhood immunizations begin at 2 months of age and continue until your child is 4 to 6 years old. Children in grades 6 and 9 also get immunizations as part of the school-based immunization program. Additional immunizations are recommended for adults, seniors and those deemed high risk.
The vaccines listed below are provided free to residents of British Columbia. Please note that certain restrictions apply for some vaccines. For more information about each vaccine, including at what age each vaccine is given and who is eligible to receive the vaccine for free, click on the links below or visit the B.C. Immunization Schedules. You can use the Child Health Passport to record your child’s immunizations.
- Chickenpox (Varicella) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #44b)
- Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hepatitis B, Polio, and Haemophilus influenzae type b (DTaP-HB-IPV-Hib) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #105)
- Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Polio, Haemophilus influenzae Type b (DTaP-IPV-Hib) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #15b)
- Hepatitis A Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #33)
- Hepatitis B Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #25a)
- Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #101b)
- Inactivated Influenza (Flu) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #12d)
- Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #14a)
- Measles, Mumps, Rubella and Varicella (MMRV) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #14e)
- Meningococcal C Conjugate (Men-C) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #23a)
- Meningococcal Quadrivalent Vaccines (HealthLinkBC File #23b)
- Pneumococcal Conjugate (PCV 13) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #62a)
- Pneumococcal Polysaccharide Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #62b)
- Rotavirus Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #104)
- Tetanus and Diphtheria (Td) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #18a)
- Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis (Tdap) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #18c)
Immunizing Your Child
To keep your child safe, it is important that they get all their vaccines on time. By getting vaccines on time, your child can be protected from many diseases over their lifetime. Click on the links below to learn how to give your child a better immunization experience, the benefits of vaccinating your child and more.
- Better Immunization Experience for Your Child (HealthLinkBC File #50e)
- Childhood Vaccines are Safe (HealthLinkBC File #50c)
- Numbing Creams and Patches for Immunizations (HealthLinkBC File #50h)
- Your Baby's Immune System and Vaccines (HealthLinkBC File #50a)
- The Benefits of Immunizing Your Child (HealthLinkBC File #50b)
Vaccination Status Reporting
The B.C. Government approved the Vaccination Status Reporting Regulation, effective July 1, 2019. This Regulation requires parents or guardians to report school-age children’s vaccination status. Public health units will begin implementing the Regulation in September.
Recent outbreaks of vaccine-preventable disease in B.C. highlight the importance of immunization. The Regulation is part of the Government’s plan to increase immunization rates in B.C.
Influenza (Flu) Immunization
The influenza vaccine is a safe and effective way to help you and your family stay healthy and prevent illness. It can even save lives. To learn more about the flu vaccines, including myths and facts, click on the links below.
- Facts about Influenza (the Flu) (HealthLinkBC File #12b)
- Inactivated Influenza (Flu) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #12d)
- Influenza (Flu) Immunization: Myths and Facts (HealthLinkBC File #12c)
- Why Seniors Should Get the Inactivated Influenza (Flu) Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #12a)
For more information about flu season, visit Influenza (Flu) Season.
Vaccines Recommended for Adults in BC
For a list of vaccines recommend for adults in BC click on the link below. Please note that certain restrictions apply for some vaccines.
If you travel abroad, you may encounter diseases that are not common in Canada. Depending on what region of the world you are travelling to, you may need one of the vaccines listed below. For more information about travel vaccines, click on the links below or speak to your health care provider.
- Health Advice for Travellers (HealthLinkBC File #41a)
- Japanese Encephalitis Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #41h)
- Malaria Prevention (HealthLinkBC File #41f)
- The Pregnant Traveller (HealthLinkBC File #41g)
- Travel Immunizations for Adults (HealthLinkBC File #41c)
- Traveller's Diarrhea (HealthLinkBC File #41e)
- Traveller's Diarrhea and Cholera Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #41k)
- Travelling with Children (HealthLinkBC File #41d)
- Typhoid Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #41j)
- Yellow Fever Vaccine (HealthLinkBC File #41i)
For a list of travel vaccines that you should consider when travelling to a particular country, visit the Public Health Agency of Canada. You can search for the country name in the drop-down menu or filter destinations, and then click the Health tab to access recommendations.
ImmunizeBC works to improve the health of British Columbians and reduce the number of infections by vaccine-preventable diseases. ImmunizeBC provides information on immunizations to individuals, families and health care providers. They also provide tools to make it easier for B.C. families to get immunized. For more information click on the links below.
Immunize Canada aims to control, eliminate and eradicate vaccine-preventable diseases in Canada by increasing awareness of the benefits and risks of immunization. Their App can help you store your vaccine information, manage immunization appointments, receive alerts about outbreaks and more.
Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC)
The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) promotes health, prevents and controls chronic and infectious diseases, and responds to public health emergencies. For answers to common questions about immunizing your children, click on the link below.
Last Reviewed: July 2019