National Immunization Awareness Week (NIAW) is an annual event held in the last
week of April to highlight and recognize the importance of immunization. This year,
Canada’s NIAW – from 24 to 30 April 2023 – coincides with Vaccination Week in the
Americas and World Immunization Week.
Theme: Let’s catch up with confidence
#NIAW2023 #VaccinesWork #GetImmunized
Over the past few years, many of us missed out on seeing the people we love and
partaking in the activities we enjoy, in order to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and to
protect ourselves and others. We stayed at home, only went out when we had to,
connected with loved ones online or over the phone, and cut back on social gatherings
in our communities. It was not easy. Another thing that was not easy during this
time was staying up to date on routine immunizations. In several places, routine
immunization programs came to a grinding halt, and many people were unable to
receive the vaccines they needed. This has not only put people behind in their routine
immunizations, but has also left the door open for a resurgence of vaccine-preventable
diseases, such as measles and polio. As we continue to live in our ‘new normal’, we are
regaining the opportunity to catch up with friends and family, catch up on the hobbies
we love, and catch up on the vaccines we missed. We want everyone to be able to
catch up with confidence, knowing they are safe and protected against vaccine-
World Immunization Week 2023 – 24 to 30 April
World Immunization Week, celebrated in the last week of April, aims to highlight the
collective action needed to protect people from vaccine-preventable diseases.
Under the banner of ‘The Big Catch-Up’, WHO is working with partners to support
countries to get back on track to ensure more people are protected from preventable
We need to act now to catch-up the millions of children who missed out on vaccines
during the pandemic, restore essential immunization coverage to at least 2019 levels and strengthen primary health care to deliver immunization.
The ultimate goal of World Immunization Week is for more children, adults – and their
communities – to be protected from vaccine-preventable diseases, allowing them to live
happier, healthier lives.
Learn about Immunization
Immunization is one of the most important and cost-effective public health innovations.
In Canada, immunization has saved more lives than any other health intervention, and
has contributed to the reduction in morbidity and mortality in adults, children and other
vulnerable populations. Without immunizations, we can expect to see serious outbreaks
of many diseases that we are now protected against.
Immunization doesn’t just protect the people who get immunized – it protects those
around them too. When a majority of the people in a community are immunized against
a disease, it greatly reduces the chances of that disease spreading in the community,
protecting people such as infants who are too young to be immunized and those who
are not able to get immunized due to medical reasons.
There are many resources available to you to learn about vaccines and immunization.
Immunize Canada has gathered resources from trusted sources and collected them
under headings on the left of your screen. If you cannot find what you are looking
for, contact us, or contact your doctor, nurse, pharmacist or local public health office.
You will find downloadable resources on this page of our website.