Immunization Schedule For Children

Immunizations, also known as vaccinations, help protect your child from getting an infectious disease. When you or your child get vaccinated, it helps protect you, others and the entire community as well. Vaccines are potent, very safe and a preventive measure against childhood diseases.


What are vaccines?

According to the WHO definition, a vaccine is a biological preparation that improves immunity to a particular disease. A vaccine typically contains an agent that resembles a disease-causing microorganism and is often made from weakened or killed forms of the microbe, its toxins or one of its surface proteins. The agent stimulates the body’s immune system to recognize the agent as foreign, destroy it, and “remember” it, so that the immune system can be more easily recognize and destroy any of these microorganisms that it later encounters.

For most vaccines, a weakened form of the disease germ is injected into your body, which is usually done with a shot in the outer part of the thing or arm.

Your body detects the invading germs (antigens) and produces antibodies to fight them. Those antibodies then stay in your body for a long period of time. In many cases, they stay for the rest of your life. If you are ever exposed to the disease again, your body will fight it off and you will be immune to it. But it does this without you ever getting the disease. So you get the protection without being sick.


How does immunity work?

Your body builds up a defense system to fight foreign germs that could make you sick or hurt you. To build up the immune system, the body must be exposed to different germs through a series of steps called the immune response, the immune system attacks organisms and substances that invade body systems and cause disease.


What Diseases Does Immunization Protect Against?

Immunization protects the children against many diseases these includes

  • Tuberculosis
  • Polio myelitis
  • Influenza
  • Whooping cough (pertussis)
  • Measles
  • German measles (rubella)
  • Meningitis
  • Pneumonia disease
  • Chickenpox (varicella),
  • Tetanus
  • Mumps
  • Yellow fever
  • Polio
  • Diphtheria
  • Gastroenteritis induced by rotavirus
  • Hepatitis.( A & B )
  • Human Papillomavirus
  • Cholera
  • Typhoid


SEE ALSO: Immunization | Vaccines Schedule in Nigeria


Immunization Schedule for Children in Nigeria

Immunization Schedule For Children

According to the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Health definition, a child is considered fully vaccinated if he or she has received a BCG vaccination against tuberculosis; at least four doses of polio vaccine; four doses of Penta prevent diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough), influenza and tetanus; and two doses of measles vaccine.

All these vaccines should be completed before the first 10 years of life. To keep track of the delivery of these immunizations, Nigeria also provides parents or guardians with immunization cards on which each dose is recorded.

Your Children Should Receive Vaccines in this Other

At Birth 

  • OPV – 0 (Oral Polio Vaccine).
  • BCG.
  • Hepatitis B.

These are given to the babies at the hospital right after birth.

6 Weeks:

  • OPV-1 (Oral Polio Vaccine).
  • Pentavalent.
  • PCV (Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine).
  • Rotavirus.

10 Weeks

  • OPV-2 (Oral Polio Vaccine.
  • Pentavalent ( Five in one vaccine. It contains DPT – diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (whooping cough Hepatitis B and Haemophilus influenza type B.)
  • PCV (Pneumococcal Conjugate vaccine. ).
  • Rotavirus
  • Meningococcal conjugate


  • OPV-3 (Oral Polio Vaccine).
  • Pentavalent.
  • PCV (Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine).
  • IPV (Inactivated Polio Vaccine).


SEE ALSO: 5 Important Reasons Why You Should Vaccinate Your Child Today.


18 Weeks

  • Meningococcal Conjugate


  • Vitamin A


  • Measles
  • Yellow fever.


  • Meningococcal Conjugate
  • PCV Booster
  • Shanchol ( Repeat the second dose in two weeks )
  • Vitamin A ( Vitamin is taken six months interval till the child is 5 years )


  • MMR
  • Chickenpox
  • Penta Booster


  • MMR ( Measles, Mumps, and Rubella )..


  • Hepatitis A & B.


  • Hepatitis A & B.


  • Typhoid.


  • HPV Human Papilloma Vaccine (three doses 0, 1, 6,months)


Pentavalent Vaccine

SEE ALSO: Outreach Hospitals Immunization Services




      What it protects against

BCG Vaccine.

BCG stands for Bacillus Calmette Guerin is a vaccine for tuberculosis (TB).

BCG is used in many countries with a high prevalence of TB to prevent childhood tuberculous meningitis and miliary disease.

BCG vaccination is recommended by the WHO for:

  • All babies at birth.
  • Are born in areas where the rates of TB are high, Nigeria inclusive
  • Have a parent or grandparent who was born in a country where there is a high rate of TB

This vaccine is received on the left arm.

The baby received about 0,05 ml of the vaccine.


Tuberculosis (TB):

Tuberculosis is a severe infectious illness which can lead to the fatal outcome without proper treatment.

TB which is curable and preventable is caused by bacteria (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) that most often affect the lungs.

TB is spread from person to person through the air. When people with lung TB cough, sneeze or spit, they propel the TB germs into the air. A person needs to inhale only a few of these germs to become infected.


HBV Vaccine.

HBV is a vaccine that prevents hepatitis B.

The first dose in 0.5 mil is recommended within 24 hours of birth on the thigh with the next two doses given at the age of 6 and 14 weeks.



Hepatitis B is an infection of your liver. It can cause scarring of the organ, liver failure, and cancer. It can be fatal if it isn’t treated.

The symptoms of hepatitis B are muscle pain, jaundice, vomiting, diarrhea, and tiredness. Sometimes the symptoms do not show up explicitly

OPV Vaccine.

Polio vaccines are vaccines used to prevent poliomyelitis.

Two types are used: an inactivated poliovirus given by injection and a weakened poliovirus given by mouth.

The World Health Organization recommends all children be fully vaccinated against polio.

Polio Myelitis

Penta Vaccine.

Penta stands for diphtheria, pertussis, influenza, Haemophilus, and tetanus.

The vaccine is used against three infectious diseases in humans: diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus.

The vaccine components include diphtheria and tetanus toxoids and killed whole cells of the bacterium that causes pertussis

These three vaccines are combined together and given on the thigh in the dose of 0,5 ml.

Diphtheria – Pertussis and Tetanus – Haemophilus

Yellow Fever.

According to WHO, yellow fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic disease transmitted by infected mosquitoes.

The “yellow” in the name refers to jaundice that affects some patients.

Once contracted, the yellow fever virus incubates in the body for 3 to 6 days.

Symptoms of yellow fever include fever, headache, jaundice, muscle pain, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue.

Yellow Fever


Measles is a viral infection that is serious for small children between the age of 0 – 5, but is easily preventable by a vaccine.

How it spreads

By mother to baby by pregnancy, labor, or nursing.


By airborne respiratory droplets (coughs or sneezes).


By saliva (kissing or shared drinks).


By skin-to-skin contact (handshakes or hugs).


By touching a contaminated surface (blanket or doorknob).

Measles symptoms don’t appear until 10 to 14 days after exposure. They include cough, runny nose, inflamed eyes, sore throat, fever, and a red, blotchy skin rash.



MMR Vaccine.

The MMR vaccine is a vaccine that protects against measles, mumps, and rubella (German measles).

The first dose is generally given to children around 9 to 15 months of age, with a second dose at 15 months to 6 years of age, with at least 4 weeks between the doses

Measles causes fever, rash, cough, runny nose, and red, watery eyes. Complications can include ear infection, diarrhoea, pneumonia, brain damage, and death.

Mumps causes fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, loss of appetite, and swollen salivary glands. Complications can include swelling of the testicles or ovaries, deafness, inflammation of the brain and/or tissue covering the brain and spinal cord (encephalitis/meningitis) and, rarely, death.

Rubella, causes fever, sore throat, rash, headache, and red, itchy eyes. If a woman gets rubella while she is pregnant, she could have a miscarriage or her baby could be born with serious birth defects.

Measles Mumps and Rubella



Given to a child to boost his/her resistance to infections


Immunization Schedule Table

Other Notes on Children Vaccines:

-Vitamin A: should be taken every 6 months until five years of life.

-After delivery, Vitamin A (200,000IU) should be taken by mothers to help the baby get it through breast milk.

-Typhoid Vaccine:   Should be taken every three years.

-Cholera Vaccine:   Should be taken every five years with two weeks interval on the first contact.

-When the child is sick, treat illness before vaccinating the baby.

-Avoid giving paracetamol to the baby before vaccination as this may reduce the effectiveness of the vaccine.


What To Do If You Miss A Vaccine

No need to panic, visit the clinic. The missed vaccines will be administered according to the immunization schedule.

Where To Get Vaccines For Children in Lagos Nigeria

You can vaccinate yourself and your family in any health center around where immunization is administered. For those in Lagos, you can do the same in any of Outreach Children and Women Hospital near you


Outreach Women and Children Hospital Festac
4th Avenue by 3rd Avenue Junction, Festac Town, Lagos.

Call: +234 8024327713, +234 7062180964, +234 8135996675, 07089758800,  +234 7068504696

WhatsApp: +234 8183803643

Outreach Women and Children Hospital Okota Isolo
125 Okota Road. Opp Slot. Okota. Isolo. Lagos.
Call: 014532865, +234 8068838225

Outreach Specialist Hospital Satellite Town
23. Community Road, Beside First Bank,Abule ado. Satellite Town
Call: 07018179085 08035187189


Onuaha Nkechi - Senior Nursing Sister

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