NHS Borders’ school vaccination programmes are “some of the best in the country”, according to the health board.

According to NHS Borders, the latest statistics show that 97 per cent of all children aged four to six in the region have received their MMR1, MMR2 and 4-in-1 vaccinations through the Primary and Booster Immunisation Programme.

Meanwhile, 88 per cent of S4 pupils in the Borders have received their Td/IPV vaccine under the Teenage Booster Immunisation Programme, according to the health board.

Tim Patterson, director of public health at NHS Borders, described the region’s immunisation programmes for children and young people as “very successful”.

“High uptake rates like these help to provide valuable protection for children and young people against many infections,” he said. “Some of these infections can cause medical complications and lead to life-changing permanent conditions such as paralysis or even be fatal.

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“Vaccinations also offer protection against serious conditions in later life such as throat and cervical cancers.

“We would encourage parents and guardians to ensure that their child or young person has all their vaccinations up-to-date."

The MMR vaccine helps protect children against measles, mumps and rubella.

Also involved in the programme, the 4-in-1 vaccine – sometimes known as the DTaP/IPV or dTaP/IPV vaccine – shields children against diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough) and polio.

The Td/IPV vaccine for young people provides protection against tetanus, diphtheria and polio. The Borders’ total of 88 per cent vaccinated is higher than the national average (86.7 per cent).

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According to the health board, in the year from S3 to S4 there was “almost a nine percentage point increase of vaccine uptake in Borders young people”, almost double that of the national average.

The uptake rates for the HPV (human papillomavirus) immunisation among all S1 pupils is also “one of the best in the country”, says NHS Borders.

The HPV vaccine is offered to all S1 pupils in Scotland, with female pupils then offered it in S2-4.

NHS Borders says that by S4, 90 per cent of female pupils have received both doses of the HPV immunisation.