Regional Immunization Manual

Competency #4: The Types of Immunizing Agents and their Composition

 Competency: Applies the knowledge of the components and properties of immunizing agents as needed for safe and effective practice.

The health professional will be able to perform the following:

  • Classify each immunizing agent used in practice as live attenuated, inactivated, or subunit.
  • Demonstrate the ability to describe live attenuated, inactivated, and subunit immunizing agents to an audience with minimal or no science knowledge.
  • Compare the major advantages and disadvantages of live attenuated versus inactivated/subunit immunizing agents.
  • Identify key differences in the immune response to purified polysaccharide versus polysaccharide protein conjugate vaccines.
  • Describe, in general terms, the purpose, action and potential concerns of each of the following components that may be present in a given vaccine product: adjuvant, preservative, additives, glass vial, stopper, and prefilled syringe.
  • Locate and utilize current information resources on the types and content of immunizing agents used in practice.

ii. Resources

  • Immunizing Agents- Current information on  the various vaccines can be found in the Canadian Immunization Guide.

Vaccine Fact Sheets - Current vaccine fact sheets and information on vaccine preventable diseases can be found on the Manitoba Health Website.

 What’s in a vaccine? - Canadian Immunization Guide

Types of Vaccine and Their Content - Canadian Immunization Guide

Vaccine Preventable Disease Information - Manitoba Health Communicable Disease Management Protocols and Fact Sheets

Addressing parents' concerns: do vaccines contain harmful preservatives, adjuvants, additives, or residuals?Offit, P.A., & Jew, R.K. (2003) Pediatrics, Vol 112, No.6., pages 1394 - 1401.

Principles of Vaccination - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2009). Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (11th ed.) - Chapter 1

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