The Netherlands has an extensive National Immunisation Programme to protect children against infectious diseases. The programme includes vaccination against 12 potentially fatal infectious diseases.

These difficult to treat and potentially fatal infectious diseases are:

  • Diphtheria (D)
  • Pertussis (whooping cough) (aP)
  • Tetanus (T)
  • Polio (IPV)
  • Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
  • Pneumococcal disease (PCV)
  • Hepatitis B (HBV)
  • Mumps (M)
  • Measles (M)
  • Rubella (German measles) (R)
  • Meningococcal disease (MenACWY)
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV)

Vaccination schedule National Immunisation Programme

To ensure that children receive maximum protection against these diseases, vaccinations are given in four steps. As of August 2011, all babies receive also vaccination against hepatitis B. Infants whose mothers are hepatitis B carriers also receive hepatitis B vaccination within 48 hours of birth.
It is essential that children complete the vaccination cycle as scheduled. If your child has not been vaccinated as scheduled, you need to seek medical advice to ensure that your child receives adequate protection.

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Surveillance and developments

In 2017, about 760,000 children aged 0 to 19 years received a total of 2,140,000 vaccinations within the National Immunisation Programme. Participation in the National Immunisation Programme was high among children under 10 years of age, despite the drop by around 2-3% for most vaccinations since 2014. An exception in the high participation is the number of girls who were vaccinated against human papillomavirus (HPV), which has declined by 15% since 2016.

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Free of charge

The Immunisation Programme is free of charge. While participation is not compulsory, over 95% of parents consent to having their children vaccinated. The high vaccination rate means that these serious diseases have now become a rarity. We need to keep it that way by ensuring that children are vaccinated.