UK program faces shortage of MenB vaccine for children

The U.K. is experiencing a shortage of private vaccinates for MenB for children.
The U.K. is experiencing a shortage of private vaccinates for MenB for children. | File photo

Health professionals in the United Kingdom recently reported that the nation is experiencing a shortage of private vaccinates for meninigitis B (MenB) for children.

"We are aware that [GlaxoSmithKline] has supply constraints on the Bexsero vaccine for the private market,” Dr. Mary Ramsay, head of immunizations at Public Health England, said. “However, this does not impact the [National Health Service] NHS program and the meningitis B vaccination program will continue to be delivered to eligible infants as part of the NHS childhood immunization schedule. If we become aware of issues affecting the supply for the NHS immunization program, we will inform health care professionals and parents."

Fortunately, the shortage will not affect the nation’s infant immunization program.

“We are relieved that the current shortage of MenB vaccine is not affecting the NHS vaccination program for babies, which was introduced in September 2015,” Linda Glennie, head of research and medical Information at the Meningitis Research Foundation, said. “The great demand for the vaccine shows how eager parents are, not just in the U.K. but all across Europe, to protect their children against this most feared childhood disease. We know that some parents are distressed at not being able to obtain the vaccine but the NHS program for babies and people with ‘at risk’ conditions is protecting the most vulnerable.”

Health professionals say they will restock the vaccine as soon as possible.

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Meningitis Research Foundation

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