What is Immunization?

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Immunization is the process whereby a person is made immune or resistant to an infectious disease.

Immunization is a proven tool for controlling and eliminating life-threatening infectious diseases and is estimated to avert over 2 million deaths each year. It enables the body to better defend itself against diseases caused by certain bacteria or viruses, and is one of the most cost-effective health investments, with proven strategies that make it accessible to even the most hard- to-reach and vulnerable populations.

Immunization may occur on its own (when people are exposed to bacteria or viruses), or typically by the administration of a vaccine. When people are immunized against a disease by the administration of a vaccine, they do not get the disease or get only a mild form of it.

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Vaccines stimulate the body’s own immune system to protect the person against subsequent infection or disease. It has clearly defined target groups. It can be delivered effectively through outreach activities; and vaccination does not require any major lifestyle change.

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