Posted on Monday, January 15th, 2018 in News.
Public Health England (PHE) has urged GPs to encourage eligible patients to get the shingles vaccine after a study which appeared in the Lancet Journal of Public Health, showed that the vaccine reduced cases by a third between 2013 and 2016.
The study looked at patients who were registered at a selection of GP surgeries between 2005 and 2016.
It found that the incidence of shingles reduced by 35% in the three years following the introduction of the vaccine in 2013 for those aged 70, with the incidence of post-herpetic neuralgia falling by half. This corresponded to 17,000 fewer cases of shingles and 3300 fewer cases of postherpetic neuralgia.
PHE reported in their 2016/2017 evaluation of the vaccination programme that coverage in the routine cohort, who receive the vaccine at 70 years of age, had fallen by 13.5% since 2013.
PHE experts attributed the reduced uptake to more patients receiving their flu jab at a pharmacy, meaning that GPs had fewer opportunities to identify eligible patients and offer them the shingles vaccine.
BMA GP Committee prescribing lead Dr Andrew Green said: ‘I would agree that the evidence is encouraging for shingles vaccination, and we should try to get as many patients vaccinated as possible.
You can also find more information about Shingles and the Shingles vaccination on NHS Choices at: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/shingles/
The original articles appears in Pulse Today magazine.