Meningitis B Vaccine Information for Parents - Immunisation Against Meningococcal B Disease for Infants
Who is eligible for the vaccine?
Starting on the 1 September 2015 all infants born on or after the 1 July 2015 were eligible for the Meningococcal B Vaccine which was administered together with the other primary immunisations at 2 months, 4 months and 12 months.
There was also a catch-up programme for infants born from 1 May 2015 to the 30 June 2015. These infants were offered the Meningococcal B Vaccine when they attended for their remaining primary immunisation appointments from 1 September 2015
Most children born before 01/05/2015 are not eligible for the Meningitis B vaccine.
Individuals with asplenia, splenic dysfunction or complement disorders may be immunised according to the schedule for individuals with underlying medical conditions.
Can the vaccine be offered to infants outside of the national programme?
The vaccine is licensed for use from the age of 2 months of age. Parents whose children are not eligible to receive the vaccine as part of the routine national programme may wish for their child to be immunised.
Parents may choose to request the vaccine from a private provider and will be liable for the costs of the vaccine and any additional administration charges.
Balham Park Surgery does not offer a private vaccination service and does not have any links with private providers.
GPs may not use vaccine stock procured for the national programme and cannot provide any vaccines outside that schedule.
Meningococcal Disease - Who does it affect?
Meningococcal disease can affect all age groups, but the rates of disease are highest in children under two years of age. Meningococcal cases increase from birth and peak at five months before declining gradually until 24 months. Cases remain low until 12 years of age and then gradually increase to a smaller peak at 18 years before declining again.
Vaccination to protect babies and children against meningitis has been part of the UK schedule for many years and is included in the pneumococcal, the Haemophilus Influenzae type B (HIB) and the Meningitis C vaccinations.
In March 2014, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation recommended the introduction of a routine infant Meningococcal B Immunisation
From 2015, children aged 14 years will be scheduled to receive a single dose of Men ACWY conjugate vaccine, along with the Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio Vaccine. These vaccinations are carried out in school.
From 2015, all students attending university for the first time should have a single dose of Meningitis ACWY Vaccine. This can be carried out in the GP setting.