Vaccine Programme Should Not Exclude Parents

Media Release 27 April 2012
Family First is labeling an immunisation programme by Waikato DHB as ‘sneaky’ and potentially harmful, and says immunisation programmes should not exclude parents from the process. 

“The Waikato DHB is intentionally targeting teenagers and even vaccinating some teenagers without parental knowledge or consent. This is dangerous ground, undermines the role of parents, and is potentially harmful to the health of the teen,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. 

“We have no problem with raising awareness – parents need to be informed of the arguments for and against vaccination and take responsibility – but to then carry out the vaccinations behind the parents’ backs is unacceptable.” 

“If the person who vaccinates them is not their family doctor, then they may lack relevant information about the child’s personal and family medical history. That has the potential to put a young teenagers’ health at risk as most young teenagers will not know enough about their history either to be able to judge whether or not they may be at higher than normal risk of suffering an adverse reaction to a vaccine,” says Mr McCoskrie. 

“If they then suffer a serious side effect that needs urgent medical attention, parents will not be able to inform medical staff that their son or daughter was recently vaccinated. This may lead to a delay in appropriate treatment or misdiagnosis of the child’s symptoms, potentially putting the child’s health further at risk.” 

“DHB’s should be working with parents – not against them,” says Mr McCoskrie. 

“We should be informing and empowering parents to act in their children’s best interests – not encouraging a ‘sneaky’ approach via social media which undermines them.”

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