PHE changes shingles vaccination programme to year-round opportunistic delivery

PHE changes shingles vaccination programme to year-round opportunistic delivery

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  • PHE changes shingles vaccination programme to year-round opportunistic delivery

    PHE changes shingles vaccination programme to year-round opportunistic delivery

    Monday, 16 April 2018 09:18
  • Study questions appropriateness of 28-day prescriptions for long term conditions

    Study questions appropriateness of 28-day prescriptions for long term conditions

    Thursday, 22 March 2018 12:15
  • GPs in Wales to see £11.67m uplift in GMS contract for 2018-19

    GPs in Wales to see £11.67m uplift in GMS contract for 2018-19

    Thursday, 22 March 2018 12:08
  • BMA announces GMS changes for 2018-19, including initial 1% pay rise

    BMA announces GMS changes for 2018-19, including initial 1% pay rise

    Thursday, 22 March 2018 12:00
  • Scottish OOH services saw 12% increase in December

    Scottish OOH services saw 12% increase in December

    Friday, 02 March 2018 12:03

a doctor in consultation imageApril 16 2018

Public Health England has updated and expanded resources relating to the shingles vaccination programme for older people. Among the changes are a new checklist, as well as an improved portfolio of patient-facing resources to promote the vaccine to eligible patients.

In addition, programme delivery is no longer focused in the autumn months, but says adults can now be offered the vaccine opportunistically as soon as they turn 70 or 78.

Until now, the shingles vaccine had been offered when the majority of adults would be receiving their seasonal flu vaccination, in part to ensure sufficient vaccine supply was available. “However, the shingles vaccine should now be offered to patients throughout the year as they become of eligible age, preferably from April onwards to align with increased central vaccine availability,” says PHE’s latest Vaccine Update for April 2018.

PHE has advised that “care must be taken not to miss patients who were eligible for immunisation in the previous programme years but have not yet been vaccinated against shingles. These patients remain eligible until their 80th birthday.”

Its ‘Shingles immunisation programme’ letter points out that under half of eligible adults had received the vaccine by the end of August 2017, and there has been a year-on-year decline on uptake. PHE hopes that “simplifying eligibility will assist in helping practices to identify eligible patients (including those who have missed out previously).”

Zostavax shingles vaccine can be ordered via the ImmForm website, and PHE advises that practices should hold two weeks’ worth of stock. “Where possible orders for Zostavax should be placed with those for childhood vaccines to ensure an efficient delivery service is maintained.”

Practices should also note that vaccine shelf life can sometimes be shorter than anticipated so should ensure regular stock rotation.

Links:
PHE ‘Shingles immunisation programme letter’
PHE ‘Vaccine update: issue 276, April 2018, shingles special edition’      

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