HPV vaccine
From September 2019, boys in school year 8 will be offered the free Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine for the first time.

The first dose of the HPV vaccine will be offered to boys and girls aged 12 and 13 in year 8. The second dose can be given anytime between 6 to 24 months after. Two doses are needed to be fully protected.

Girls and boys who have their first vaccination after the age of 15 will need to have 3 doses.

Older boys (those currently aged 13 to 18) will not be offered the vaccine on a ‘catch-up’ basis.

For more information about HPV, visit this NHS website.

Parents of girls and boys aged 12 and 13 should look out for information from their children’s school about the vaccine and timings for the jab. If they miss out on the vaccination for any reason they should talk to their school nurse or immunisation team about getting the vaccine at a later date.

All boys in school year 8 were offered the free HPV vaccine in September 2019 for the first time. Estimates suggest that this could prevent over 64,000 cervical cancers and nearly 50,000 non-cervical cancers by 2058.

Td/IPV and MenACWY vaccine
Children aged 13 or 14 years of age in Year 9 will have two vaccinations, the Td/IPV and MenACWY as part of the national immunisation schedule. The MenACWY is also available for school leavers.

Td/IPV vaccine
Td/IPV is a single vaccination, injected into the muscle of the upper arm and is given to boost protection against three diseases: tetanus, diphtheria and polio.

  • Tetanus is a painful disease which affects the nervous system. It can lead to muscle spasms, breathing difficulties and can kill. It is caused when germs found in the soil and manure get into the body via open cuts and burns. It cannot be passed from person to person.
  • Diphtheria is a serious disease that usually begins with a sore throat and can rapidly cause breathing problems. It can damage the nervous system and heart and can cause death in severe cases.
  • Polio is a virus which affects the nervous system. It can cause permanent paralysis of muscles and can cause death.

A total of five doses of tetanus, diphtheria and polio vaccines is needed to build up children’s immunity. These are offered at 2, 3 and 4 months of age, at 3 years 4 months with the final dose at 13-14 years of age. For more information visit the NHS website.

Men ACWY
The Men ACWY vaccine which is given as a single injection into the upper arm, is highly effective in preventing illness by the four different strains of the meningococcal bacteria that cause meningitis and blood poisoning: A, C, W and Y.

  • Meningococcal bacteria lives in the back of the nose and throat in about 1 in 10 people without causing any symptoms or illness. The bacteria is spread from person to person by prolonged close contact such as coughing, kissing or sneezing with a person carrying the bacteria.
  • Men W is a highly aggressive strain and has been increasing in England. Although rare, it can spread rapidly and can cause serious illness in otherwise healthy children and adults. One in 3 teenagers with Men W have died as a result.

For more information about the Men ACWY vaccine visit the NHS website.

THE FLU VACCINE
The flu vaccine for children is needle free, quick and painless. It is given as a single dose of nasal spray squirted up each nostril. Children who have the flu vaccine are less likely to become ill if they come into contact with the flu virus. For more information visit the Vaccination UK page.

Watch the Flu Heroes – Nasal Flu Spray video