Although chickenpox (Varicella) vaccine is not currently given routinely as part of the UK childhood vaccination schedule, it is part of the childhood vaccination schedule in many other countries.
The chickenpox vaccine can be administered from the age of 12 months onwards. Two doses of vaccine are necessary with a 12 week gap between the two doses.
The chickenpox vaccines contains a live virus, and therefore should not be given to individuals who have reduced immunity (e.g. HIV, cancer chemotherapy) or during pregnancy. If other live vaccines are also needed, they should either be administered on the same day, or with a gap of at least one-month between them, for optimal efficacy. We will be happy to advise you in more detail about this when you attend.
Chickenpox is more serious in adults. If you have been exposed to a person suffering from chickenpox, and you do not think that you yourself have had chickenpox in the past, there may be some benefit to being vaccinated immediately: early vaccination may prevent the disease or make it less serious, and may protect you from chickenpox if you are exposed to it again in future. We are also able to perform a blood test to check your immunity, many individuals who are concerned about possible exposure turn out to be already immune.
Children aged from 12 months to 12 years old: To ensure optimal protection against chickenpox, two doses should be given 12 weeks apart.
Teenagers of 13 years of age and older and adults: To ensure optimal protection against chickenpox two doses should be given. The second dose should be given 4 to 8 weeks after the first dose.
Cost: £95 per dose (which includes the appointment fee)