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What's Up with Evan? Meidkidz Explain Vaccinations ISBN: 9781906935450
Chilman-Blair, Dr Kim and DeLoache, Shawn
Published by Medikidz Publishing, 2011
In this series of comics about health conditions and illnesses, the 'Medikidz' are a team of five superheroes who live in an alternative planet called 'Mediland', a place which is shaped like the human body. The team is made up of Axon, the brain specialist (and his pet robot Abacus, the brain on legs), Chi, the lung specialist, Skinderella, who knows all about skin and bones, Pump, the heart and blood expert, and Gastro, the expert on the digestive system (who is the joker and fart specialist!). The series is aimed precisely at kids, and the information therein is given in language that is easily understood; not only that, but because of the highly-coloured comic format, children will want to read it. The books are clever and funny and put lots of excellent, detailed information into an accessible read. Furthermore, the medical information, written by doctors, is peer reviewed by experts in the field.
In this story, Evan, an obvious leader amongst his chums, is waiting with said chums outside the school nurse's office for a vaccination (unspecified). The wait is boring, and furthermore, the idea of a sore arm is not appealing. Evan and his friends are about to bunk off when he suddenly disappears. Yes, it's those Medikidz again! They have twigged that Evan needs to influence his friends to have their jabs, and in order to do that, he needs to understand why they are necessary. Evan believes himself to be just fine - witty, smart, handsome and 'dreamy' according to the girls. Why should he need a vaccination. The Medikidz take him first to the bloodstream to explain about infections, and he meets all sorts of blue, green and purple 'bugs' that can do harm. How they make clones of themselves is shown, and then we learn about the immune system. The four types of white blood cells are explained, and they do battle, causing damage to the body as a result. This is where the vaccines come in. But Evan has a question: a 'friend' of his is scared of needles. The Medikidz are reassuring but honest; it will only hurt for a few seconds. There are further explanations about the different kinds of vaccinations and that some of them require boosters. Evan is also told that without being vaccinated he could be spreading germs to other people who might have conditions that would make the germs really dangerous. Finally, he is told about possible side effects and the fact that some people with allergies should be given special vaccines. Evan is convinced and so are we that vaccines are a good thing, and when he reappears amongst his chums, he bravely sallies forth into the nurse's office.
Available from the publisher at The basic web site at has lots more health information for children, as well as titles of many more comics in the series in a wide range of health and disability areas. Well worth a look.
Age: 11+