Meningitis B Vaccination at the Town Centre Surgery Athlone
Meningitis B vaccinations was included in the Primary Childhood Immunisation Schedule (PCIS) for all children born on or after 1 October 2016. However, the HSE have confirmed that there will be no catch-up programme. Children born before 1 October 2016 will have to be vaccinated outside the PCIS system, which means opting to pay privately for this service from your GP. The Town Centre Surgery is offering a private vaccination service to cover this cohort of children. If you are interested in having your children vaccinated please read below and talk to a Nurse or GP if you have any further queries.
Why do we need a Meningitis B vaccine?
For decades, Men B has been the most common cause of bacterial meningitis in the UK and Ireland. Vaccines are the only way to prevent meningitis and have almost eliminated some other kinds of meningitis. Since the first meningitis vaccine was introduced against Hib meningitis in 1992, many kinds of meningitis have been reduced or have dwindled to a mere handful of cases, including Hib, Men C and Pneumococcal. Thanks to meningitis vaccines, thousands of children are alive today who would otherwise have died from these deadly diseases. Meanwhile, meningococcal meningitis and septicaemia remain the leading infectious cause of death for children under five in the UK.
How effective is this vaccine?
Results from the vaccine trials are very encouraging, showing that the vaccine triggers a strong immune response in infants, toddlers and adolescents. Studies of circulating Men B strains looking at how well they match the vaccine have predicted that it will cover approximately 88% of Men B circulating in the UK, and 78% of Men B in Europe over all. The actual proportion of cases prevented will depend on other things too, including how widely the vaccine is offered and taken up, whether it prevents the bacteria from being carried and passed on as well as protecting from disease, how long protection lasts, and whether it works sufficiently well in all age groups.
(Text above adapted from meningitis.org)
Common Side Effects of the Meningitis B Vaccine:
- Discomfort, redness and swelling at injection site
How much does the vaccine cost?
Children not covered under the PCIS (children born before 1st October 2016) will need to pay for the vaccination. The Irish Government do not have a plan for a catch up schedule for older children. The cost of the vaccine is €165 per vaccine and 2-3 shots will be required depending on the age of your child. This price includes the vaccine and Nurse Administration. The administration cost is not covered by the GP Under 6 card as it is outside of ‘routine care’. Due to the high cost of the vaccine it must be paid for in full before an appointment can be made.
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