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MenB

A Department of Health spokesperson:

"When any new immunisation programme is introduced, there has to be a date to determine eligibility - a decision based on the best independent clinical recommendation to ensure we can protect those children most at risk of MenB.
"When our nationwide MenB vaccination programme was introduced last year, England became the first country to protect our babies from this devastating disease. All children who are now aged up to 9 months should have been offered the vaccine."

Background

The Department of Health is advised on immunisation matters, including the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of new vaccines by the independent expert body, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) - https://www.gov.uk/government/groups/joint-committee-on-vaccination-and-immunisation. The JCVI advised that the Meningococcal B vaccination programme should aim to protect infants before they reach five months of age because this is when the risk is greatest. The vaccine is first offered to children from 2 months of age.

MenB immunisation was introduced from 1 September for those babies who are due to receive their primary immunisations starting at 2 months of age on or after 1 September 2015 (i.e. those born on or after 1 July 2015), with a one-off catch-up programme for those infants born from 1 May 2015 to 30 June 2015.

Children who are now aged up to 9 months should have been offered the vaccine.
When any new immunisation programme is introduced, there has to be a cut-off date to determine eligibility. We recognise that parents of babies who narrowly fall on the wrong side of the cut-off date will naturally feel disappointed at this, but there is no other way of realistically starting new programmes.



 
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