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Hastings and Prince Edward Public Health

DTaP-IPV-Hib (Pediacel/Pentacel) Vaccine FAQs

The “5 in 1” combination vaccine for diphtheria, tetanus, acellular pertussis, inactivated polio and haemophilus influenzae type b, (DTaP-IPV-Hib), helps to protect children and adults against all five diseases. When given in the recommended schedule, the DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine helps protect almost everyone from diphtheria, tetanus, polio and haemophilus influenzae type b, and most people from pertussis.

What are diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis and polio?

  • Diphtheria is a serious bacterial infection of the nose, throat and skin, and it is spread through coughing, sneezing and skin-to-skin contact. Diphtheria causes sore throat, fever and chills and can result in breathing problems, heart failure and paralysis and death.
  • Tetanus, or lockjaw, is a serious bacterial infection you can get if dirt containing the tetanus germ gets into a cut in the skin. Tetanus germs are usually found in soil, dust and manure. It does not spread from person to person. Tetanus usually causes cramping of the muscles and severe convulsions, and it can be fatal.
  • Pertussis, or whooping cough, is a serious bacterial infection of the airways that occurs in people of all ages, but it can be especially severe in children. It spreads easily through coughing, sneezing or close face-to-face contact. Pertussis can cause violent coughing that ends in a “whooping” sound and may last for weeks to months. It causes vomiting and makes it hard to breathe, eat or drink. Pertussis can lead to pneumonia, seizures and brain damage. It can be fatal, especially in babies and children.
  • Polio is a serious infection caused by a virus. It spreads through coughing or sneezing or by eating contaminated food or drinking contaminated water. It is still present in some developing countries where there may be poor sanitation. Polio can cause nerve damage and paralyze the muscles used for breathing, talking, eating and walking. Though it can be fatal, it has become a rare disease, due to worldwide immunization campaigns.
  • Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib) is a bacteria / germ that can cause an infection of the fluid and lining that covers the spinal cord(meningitis),and other serious infections of the throat, lungs, blood, bone and joints. It is not related to influenza. Hib is spread through coughing, sneezing, kissing or sharing drinks, and by touching contaminated objects. It can result in severe disabilities, such as brain damage, blindness and deafness. It can be fatal.

Who should get the publicly funded (free) DTaP-IPV-Hib “5 in 1” vaccine in Ontario?

  • Children 6 weeks to 4 years of age: DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine is routinely given in Ontario to children at 2, 4, 6 and 18 months of age, who are receiving immunizations for the first time.
  • Children 5 to 6 years of age with certain medical conditions are eligible for DTaP-IPV-Hib.

What are the common side effects of this vaccine?

  • Some people may feel sore and swollen for a few days where the needle was given.
  • Some people may have general muscle aches, fever and feel tired for a day or two.
  • Tylenol® or ibuprofen may be taken afterward, as directed, to reduce discomfort or fever.
  • Children under 19 yrs of age must not be given ASA, Aspirin® or salicylates.

Who should not get the DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine?

  • Anyone who has had a serious allergic reaction to any previous dose of vaccine containing diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio or Hib or to any component of the vaccine:
    • Pediacel – diphtheria toxoid, tetanus toxoid, acellular pertussis toxoid, inactivated polio vaccine (type 1, 2, 3), Hib vaccine, aluminum phosphate, 2-phenolyethanol, polysorbate 80, bovine serum albumin, neomycin, formaldehyde, glutaraldehyde, polymyxin B and streptomycin. Does not contain latex.
    • Pentacel – diphtheria toxoid, tetanus toxoid, acellular pertussis toxoid, inactivated polio vaccine (type 1, 2, 3), Hib vaccine, aluminum phosphate, polysorbate 80, neomycin, formaldehyde, glutaraldehyde, bovine serum albumin, 2-phenolyethanol, neomycin and polymyxin B – Does not contain latex.
  • Anyone with a high fever or moderate to severe illness should wait until they feel well.
  • Anyone who has a
    • progressive or unstable neurological disorder (e.g. uncontrolled epilepsy).
    • weakened immune system.
    • history of Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) within 6 weeks of a tetanus vaccine.
    • history of swelling on the brain within 7 days of receiving a pertussis vaccine.
  • Delay vaccination until completion of immunosuppressive treatment, if possible.

What else do I need to know?

  • To reduce the spread of germs, encourage your child to sneeze or cough in to a tissue or into their elbow or upper sleeve, and wash their hands frequently with soap and water for at least 15 seconds.
  • The Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014 requires all children entering daycare to provide proof of immunization, according to the Publicly Funded Immunization Schedule for Ontario.
  • The Immunization of School Pupils Act requires all students between the ages of 4 to 17 to be immunized according to Ontario’s Immunization Schedule, unless a valid Statement of Medical Exemption or Conscience or Religious Belief is on file with Public Health.

When should I seek medical help after immunization?

  • If you or your child experiences any unusual side effects, please seek medical attention and notify us.
  • Go to Emergency at a hospital right away, or call 911, if you or your child has any of the following symptoms after immunization:
    • swelling of the face and neck
    • problems breathing
    • hives and itchy, reddened skin

Your Record of Protection

After you receive any immunization, make sure your health care provider updates your personal immunization record. Keep it in a safe place. Please inform us of any immunizations not received from Public Health.

DTaP-IPV-Hib (Pediacel/Pentacel) Vaccine Fact Sheet printable pdf

Need More Information About DTaP-IPV-Hib (Pediacel/Pentacel) Vaccine FAQs?

Talk to your health care provider or call our Immunization Program at 613-966-5500 or 1-800-267-2803, ext. 221.

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Appointments for individuals 5+ can be booked through the provincial vaccine booking site, or by calling 1-833-943-3900 from 8 am to 8 pm, 7 days a week.  

Due to limited supply, HPEPH will initially be prioritizing available bivalent vaccine for residents and workers at identified highest-risk facilities.  Some HPEPH vaccination clinics MAY offer the bivalent vaccine, as availability allows. Vaccine clinics in Hastings and Prince Edward Counties will continue to offer monovalent vaccines (the same mRNA vaccines given as the primary series) for all eligible individuals until a steady supply of the bivalent vaccine is available.

Visit the HPEPH vaccine booking web page for details.


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The Ministry of Health has launched a new toll-free line as an additional resource to help answer questions from the public regarding evolving COVID-19 testing and isolation guidance. The line can be reached at 1-888-777-0730, and is available from 8 am to 6 pm, 7 days a week.