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GPs should extend shingles vaccination to 80-year-olds who missed jab in pandemic

shingles vaccination

Patients who turned 80 during the pandemic and missed their chance for a shingles vaccine can be vaccinated up until the 31 July.

The vaccine should be offered opportunistically or if requested and the change does not reflect any contractual changes to the programme, according to a BMA update.

GPs will continue to be reimbursed via the standard item of service fee, which should be claimed manually, the BMA said.

Individuals become eligible for routine vaccination against shingles when they reach age 70, and all those aged up to and including 79, are now eligible to receive the vaccine until they reach age 80. 

Year-round opportunistic vaccination was introduced in 2018 amid falling uptake where just half of those eligible had been vaccinated.

An indicator for the percentage of patients who reached 80 years old in the preceding 12 months, who have received a shingles vaccine between the ages of 70 and 79 years was added to a new vaccination and immunisation domain in the 2021/22 QOF.