New MenB vaccine to be introduced into the UK routine schedule

The JCVI (Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation) has today recommended that a vaccine against group B meningococcus (MenB) should become part of the NHS’s routine immunisation schedule for children, as long as the Department of Health can negotiate a cost-effective price with the manufacturer. The vaccine will be given at 2, 4 and 12 months. See more information about the new MenB vaccine.

Study finds that flu vaccination in pregnancy reduces the risk of having a premature birth

A Canadian study has found an association between flu vaccination in pregnancy and improved outcomes for newborn babies.

A team from Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia analysed data from over 12,000 women who gave birth between November 2010 and March 2012. 16% of the women (about 1 in every 6) had had the flu vaccine while they were pregnant. The study looked at whether the flu vaccine made any difference to a woman’s chance of giving birth prematurely, or of having a low-birthweight baby.

Public and Patient Involvement in Vaccine Research

Would you like to be part of a Public and Patient Involvement group at Oxford Vaccine Group?

If you live in the Oxford area and have an interest in vaccine research, we would like to hear from you. We are aiming to recruit a small group of members of the public to meet around three times a year. The group will potentially have an important impact on the way we run our clinical trials into new vaccines.

We will be asking participants to:

The impact of HPV vaccination

New annual data published by Public Health England in December 2013 shows that HPV vaccination coverage remained high in 2012-13, with 86% of 12 and 13 year old girls in England receiving the full course.
A recent PHE study also provides evidence that the vaccination programme is successfully preventing HPV infections in young women in England.

Before vaccination started in 2008, the research found HPV infections (type 16 and 18) in around 1 in 5 sexually active women aged 16 to 18 years. Since the introduction of vaccination, this has dropped to 1 in 15.

Pneumococcal meningitis - Sam's story

We recently had the privilege to meet Sam Willis and his family, in order to make another of our series of short films about the impact of infectious diseases. Sam had pneumococcal meningitis when he was 9 months old. In this new short film, his father Matthew describes the lasting effects of the disease, and talks compellingly about the impact of Sam's condition on the whole family. We get an insight into what home - and school - life is like for Sam, who was 11 years old when this film was made.

Changes to MenC vaccination schedule from June 2013

Infant doses to be reduced

From June 2013, babies in the UK will receive just two doses of the MenC vaccine, one at 3 months and another at 1 year of age – they will no longer receive a dose at 4 months of age. Studies have shown that a single dose at 3 months provides good levels of protection against group C meningococcal disease during the first year of life, which can then be renewed at 12-13 months with the Hib-MenC booster.