In the coming period, the municipality wants to enter into discussions with people who are skeptical about vaccination. According to the municipality, vaccination rates among Amsterdammers are currently not high enough to protect everyone and wants to raise vaccination rates with talks.
“Especially now that vaccinations are in the spotlight, it is important to enter into discussions with all groups, including the youth, about vaccination,” emphasizes health care councilor Simone Kukenheim. “Unfortunately, the Amsterdam percentages are still below the national average and below the target figures set by the World Health Organization.”
The vaccination coverage is based on the number of vaccinated children in a given year of birth who have been vaccinated against a disease. Dutch children receive a vaccination for twelve infectious diseases. These include diseases such as mumps, measles, rubella and whooping cough.
Latest figures are positive
The discussions that the municipality wants to hold are therefore not only about the corona vaccination. “After all, vaccination is about more than covid,” said Kukenheim.
Even though Amsterdam is still below the national average, there is an increase in the number of vaccinated children. “For example, the decline in infant vaccination rates in recent years has come to an end,” the municipality said. “There has also been a significant increase in the number of HPV vaccinations (against the virus that can cause cervical cancer, among other things) from 36% in 2018 to 42.5% in 2019.”
“However, these vaccinations are not self-evident for everyone,” says Kukenheim. The municipality now also has insight into which groups of residents show a low vaccination rate. Girls with a Moroccan or Turkish background are particularly noticeable.
In a survey of different types of vaccinations, children who have not been vaccinated were asked why they had not been injected. According to the municipality, ‘I couldn’t on the bite day’ and ‘I forgot to go’ were often cited as reasons. “With HPV, girls indicated that they do not have sufficient knowledge about the effect and importance of HPV vaccination.”
With the digital conversations, the municipality wants to further elaborate on the doubts and considerations of parents who do not want or cannot have their child vaccinated.