In the United Kingdom, quite a lot of vaccines are offered for free on the NHS according to the established vaccination schedule. This schedule includes everything from the first polio vaccine given to eight weeks old babies to the shingles vaccine offered to 70-year-old pensioners.
In addition to these vaccines, there are also vaccines that are only available on the NHS for those who fall into certain risk groups. Examples of such risk groups are people with certain underlying health conditions, pregnant women and healthcare workers. For more information, contact your GP or the NHS. Within this group of vaccines, you will, for instance, find influenza and whooping cough vaccinations offered to pregnant women and the TB vaccination available for free to people with an increased risk of exposure to TB infection. Hepatitis B vaccination and chickenpox vaccination are two other examples of vaccinations that you may be eligible for without cost from the NHS if you belong to a risk group.
When it comes to travel vaccines, there are some that you can have for free on the NHS from your local GP surgery. This group includes the hepatitis A vaccine, the typhoid vaccine, and the cholera vaccine. Other travel vaccines come with a fee at the GP surgery or are only available at private clinics. One example of a travel vaccination that is only available privately is the yellow fever vaccination. On average, expect to pay around £60 for a single yellow fever vaccination.
Vaccines routinely offered to everyone in the UK for free on the NHS
Vaccines for children during their first year of life
The first vaccination appointment for children in the United Kingdom is scheduled for when the child reaches eight weeks of age. At this appointment, the child will receive the Pneumococcal (PCV) vaccine, the Rotavirus vaccine, the Men B vaccine against meningococcal meningitis type B, and the 5-in-1 vaccine.
The 5-in-1 vaccine is a single injection that includes vaccines against five different diseases: polio, diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, and Haemophilus influenzae type b (known as Hib – a bacterial infection that can cause severe pneumonia or meningitis in young children).
When the child is twelve weeks old, it is time for it to get a second dose of the 5-in-1 vaccine and a second dose of the Rotavirus vaccine. The child should also get its first dose of the Men C vaccine against meningococcal meningitis type C.
When the child is sixteen weeks old, it is time for it to get a third dose of the 5-in-1 vaccine, a second dose of the Pneumococcal (PCV) vaccine, and a second dose of the Men B vaccine against meningococcal meningitis type B.
Vaccines for the 1-year-old child
When the child is one year of age, it should receive the following immunizations:
- MMR. This is a combined injection that includes vaccines against measles, mumps, and rubella.
- Pneumococcal (PCV) vaccine. This is the child’s third dose of PCV vaccine.
- Men B vaccine. This is the child’s third dose of Men B vaccine.
- Hib & Men C booster. This is a combined injection that includes vaccines against both Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) and Men C. It will be the child’s second dose of Men C vaccine and fourth dose of Hib vaccine. (The previous three doses of Hib vaccine were included in 5-in-1 injections.)
Flu vaccine for children aged 2 – 6 years
An annual children’s flu vaccine is offered every year for children in this age group.
Vaccines for children aged 3 years and 4 months
When the child is 3 years and 4 months old, it should receive two injections:
- The second dose of the MMR vaccine against measles, mumps, and rubella.
- The 4-in-1 pre-school injection includes vaccines against polio, diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough. (Unlike the 5-in-1 injection, the 4-in-1 injection does not include any vaccine against Hib.)
HPV vaccine for girls aged 12-13 years
Girls are given two doses of the HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccine when they are 12-13 years old. The second dose is given 6 – 12 months after the first dose. Both doses are given in the form of an injection.
If a girl misses either of her HPV vaccinations, she can have them later, but if she is older than 15 years of age she will need three doses instead of just two. Girls can have the HPV vaccination on the NHS up to the age of 18.
Vaccines for 14-year-olds
14-year-olds are given two injections:
- The Men ACWY vaccine against four different types of meningococcal meningitis.
- The 3-in-1 teenage booster contains vaccines against polio, diphtheria, and tetanus.
UK Forex trading
Forex trading, the practice of buying and selling currencies for profit, is becoming increasingly popular in the UK. The forex market offers a lot that is attractive to day traders and other active traders. The market is very large, open 24 hours a day, has high liquidity and the exchange rates are constantly fluctuating. Another attraction is that many forex trading platforms allow traders to trade using large leverage. This allows traders to make large profits (and losses) from small fluctuations.
The FCA regulates UK forex trading platforms. The FCA regulates the trade to reduce the risk that the traders are exposed to. The FCA regulations include regulations designed to prevent predatory promotional material and excessively large leverages. UK traders can also choose to trade on a platform that is not regulated by the FCA, but it is always better to choose an FCA-regulated broker if you live in the UK. Here, you will find a list of UK forex trading platforms.
Please note that forex trading is high-risk trading and a lot of traders end up losing money when they start trading on the forex market.
Vaccines for 65-year-olds and up
- When you turn 65, you will be offered a Pneumococcal (PCV) vaccine. This is not an annual vaccine – the injection you get at 65 is expected to keep you protected for the rest of your life.
- For anyone aged 65 or above, a new influenza vaccine is offered every year. This is an annual vaccine, you need to get a new injection every year prior to the flu season.
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The shingles vaccine for 70-year-olds and 78-year-olds
The shingles vaccine is available on the NHS for people aged 70 years and 78 years. (Some people are also eligible at 79 years.)
The shingles vaccine is unavailable on the NHS if you are 80 or over.
When planning to travel outside of the UK, it’s important to consider the necessary vaccinations based on your destination. Some of the most commonly recommended travel vaccines for UK residents include:
- Hepatitis A: This is recommended for many developing countries, especially where water and food hygiene may be poor.
- Typhoid: Often advised for those travelling to areas with poor sanitation.
- Yellow Fever: Mandatory for entry into certain countries, especially in sub-Saharan Africa and parts of South America south of Colombia.
- Hepatitis B: Recommended for long-term travellers, healthcare workers, or those who might have close personal contact with the local population.
- Rabies: Relevant for travellers to areas where rabies is endemic, particularly if they will be remote from medical facilities.
- Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Polio (DTP): Boosters might be required if you travel to areas with limited medical facilities.
- Meningitis ACWY: Recommended for travellers to the “meningitis belt” of sub-Saharan Africa.
- Japanese Encephalitis and Tick-Borne Encephalitis: Relevant for certain regions of Asia and Central/Eastern Europe.
- Cholera: For those visiting areas of active cholera transmission.