Men B Vaccine
Meningococcal group B bacteria is a serious cause of life-threatening infections, including meningitis and blood poisoning, worldwide and the leading infectious killer of babies and young children in the UK.
England is the first country in the world to offer a national, routine and publicly funded Men B vaccination programme which is being offered to babies as part of the routine NHS childhood vaccination programme.
There is also a temporary catch-up programme for babies who are due their 3- and 4-month vaccinations in September 2015, to protect them when they are most at risk from infection.
The Men B vaccine is offered to babies alongside their other routine vaccinations at 2 months, 4 months and 12 months and is given as a single injection into the baby’s thigh. It can also be given at the same time as other routine baby vaccinations.
The vaccine will protect your baby against infection by meningococcal group B bacteria, which are responsible for more than 90% of meningococcal infections in young children.
The surgery will automatically send you an appointment for you to bring your baby for their Men B vaccination alongside the other routine vaccinations.
For more information about which babies should have the vaccine, click here?
Men B Vaccine Safety
Like all vaccines, the Men B vaccine can cause side effects, but studies suggest they are generally mild and don’t last long. Since the vaccine was licensed, almost a million doses have been given, with no safety concerns identified.
Babies given the Men B vaccine alongside their other routine vaccinations at two and four months are likely to develop fever within the first 24 hours after vaccination.
It’s important that you give your baby liquid paracetamol following vaccination to reduce the risk of fever but the practice nurse will give you more information about this at your appointment.
Other common side effects include irritability and redness and tenderness at the injection site. The liquid paracetamol will also help with these symptoms.