Diphtheria, Pertussis (Whooping Cough), Tetanus and Polio

Many immigrants are susceptible to vaccine-preventable diseases upon arrival in Canada. Evidence indicates that 30%–50% of new immigrants are susceptible to tetanus. Immunity against diphtheria is low among immigrants – 35% to 50%.1 Vaccinating children against diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus and polio have dramatically reduced the incidence of these illnesses (92% to 99.9%) and have almost completely eliminated resulting deaths.1

1Pottie K, Greenaway C, Feightner J, et al. Evidence-based clinical guidelines for immigrants and refugees. CMAJ 2011;183:E824-925.


Canadian Immigrant Health Guidelines recommend that all immigrant children with missing or uncertain vaccination records be vaccinated using age-appropriate vaccination for diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus and polio.1

For the Canadian Immigrant Health Guidelines click here.