Scheduled immunisations are an important and legitimate medical reason to leave your house, and people who have an immunisation appointment should attend as planned. If an individual with an upcoming immunisation appointment – or a member of their household – is showing symptoms of COVID-19, then they must not attend, but should call the number on their invitation to rearrange the appointment.

Message from Nicola Steedman, Deputy Chief Medical Officer

Nuala Healy, Organisational Lead for Screening and Immunisation, Public Health Scotland; said:

"Immunisation saves lives by protecting against serious diseases. It is important to continue to protect your child from serious diseases such as meningitis, whooping cough and measles, by attending immunisation appointments, during the Covid-19 outbreak.

"Doing so will help avoid outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases. It will also avoid increasing further, the numbers of patients requiring health services and hospitalisation from vaccine-preventable diseases."

Dr Gregor Smith, Interim Chief Medical Officer, said:

"We’re grateful to everyone for heeding our Stay Home Save Lives message during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the NHS is still open, and the routine vaccination programme is an important way to protect you and your family’s health.

"It is important we continue to protect children and other vulnerable groups against serious vaccine-preventable diseases. Routine immunisations for children and pregnant women are a crucial way we can help keep people safe and healthy at this time.

"We know members of the public will have protecting their family’s health from coronavirus, by following guidance on social distancing and not travelling unnecessarily, at the forefront of their minds. But receiving an immunisation is one of the important medical reasons for which you should leave your house, and it will help protect you or your child from other serious diseases."

To keep up-to-date about immunisations, please visit the immunisation pages on NHS Inform (external website) and follow the @NHSImmuniseScot Twitter account for the latest advice.

Last updated: 20 April 2020