Immunisation is also known as vaccination, and is the most effective way to protect your child against diseases that can cause serious, and sometimes fatal, illness. It works by using a vaccine to stimulate a child's immune system. 

Registered nurses who work with the Nelson Marlborough Public Health Service help ensure that New Zealand babies and children are protected from diseases.

They work with local schools to run school-age immunisation education and delivery programmes. They also check whether children have been immunised before they start school. This occurs during a child’s ‘B4 School Check’.

Read more about the B4 School Check programme


Making an informed choice

The World Health Organisation and the Ministry of Health recommend that you immunise your children. Immunisation is your choice – if you have questions or would like more information, you can:

  • talk to your family doctor, nurse, lead maternity carer or Plunket nurse
  • look up immunisations in your baby’s Well Child Tamariki Ora book
  • refer to the Ministry of Health's guide for parents
  • call the Immunisation Advisory Centre (IMAC) on 0800 IMMUNE (0800 466 863) or visit

The National Immunisation Schedule

The National Immunisation Schedule is the series of vaccines that are offered free to pregnant women, babies, children, adolescents and adults.

The schedule is listed on the Ministry of Health's website.

The National Immunisation Register

The National Immunisation Register (NIR) is a computerised information system that has been developed to hold immunisation details of New Zealand children. Learn more about the NIR here.

For more information about childhood immunisation

 How immunisation works: A video from the Ministry of Health


The Immunisation Advisory Centre website has information about vaccines, diseases and making an informed decision. Go to this website

The Health Navigator website has information about diseases and immunisation, including fact sheets in multiple languages. Go to this website

The Kids Health NZ webstie has information about childhood diseases and other common conditions. Go to this website


Childhood diseases

Immunisation protects children from these diseases: