When Is The Pneumonia Vaccine Given
The pneumonia vaccine is not the same as the flu vaccine, as it doesnt need to be given at a certain time of year. Rather, it can be given at any time, as long as its safe for you to have it.
However, if youre in a high-risk group for pneumonia, you should get the vaccine as soon as possible to make sure youre protected.
What You Should Know About Pneumonia
Pneumonia is an infection in one or both lungs that typically stems from several kinds of germs, most often bacteria and viruses.
Symptoms can develop gradually or suddenly. They include:
- Chest pain.
- Loss of appetite.
Early detection is often challenging because many people with these symptoms assume they have a cold or the flu.
Its important to also note that the vaccine helps protect against some but not all bacterial pneumonia.
There are dozens of different types of bacterial pneumonia, says Dr. Suri. The vaccine will certainly reduce your risk of the most common bacterial pneumonia.
Why Do You Need Booster Shots
The tetanus vaccine doesnt provide lifelong immunity. Protection begins to decrease after about 10 years, which is why doctors advise booster shots every decade.
A doctor may recommend children and adults get a booster shot earlier if theres a suspicion they may have been exposed to tetanus-causing spores.
For example, if you step on a rusty nail or have a deep cut thats been exposed to infected soil, your doctor may recommend a booster.
Some people shouldnt be vaccinated, including people who:
- had severe reactions to previous doses of the vaccine
- have Guillain-Barré syndrome, a neurological immune disorder
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Who Should Not Get The Vaccine
People should not get the vaccine if they have had a life threatening allergic reaction to a previous dose.
Additionally, a person should not undergo vaccination if they have had an allergic reaction to medication containing diphtheria toxoid or an earlier form of the pneumonia vaccination .
Lastly, people who are sick or have allergic reactions to any of the ingredients of the vaccine should talk to a doctor before getting the shot.
A pneumonia shot will not reduce pneumonia. However, it helps prevent invasive pneumococcal diseases, such as meningitis, endocarditis, empyema, and bacteremia, which is when bacteria enter the bloodstream.
Noninvasive pneumococcal disease includes sinusitis.
There are two types of pneumonia shots available. Which type a person gets depends on their age, whether or not they smoke, and the presence of any underlying medical conditions.
The two types are:
- Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine : Healthcare providers recommend this vaccine for young children, people with certain underlying conditions, and some people over the age of 65 years.
- Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine : Healthcare providers recommend this vaccine for anyone over 65 years of age, people with certain underlying conditions, and people who smoke.
According to the
- roughly 8 in 10 babies from invasive pneumococcal disease
- 45 in 100 adults 65 years or older against pneumococcal pneumonia
- 75 in 100 adults 65 years or older against invasive pneumococcal disease
Who Needs One Or Two Pneumonia Vaccines
There are two pneumococcal vaccines, each working in a different way to maximize protection. PPSV23 protects against 23 strains of pneumococcal bacteria. Those 23 strains are about 90- to 95-plus percent of the strains that cause pneumonia in humans, Poland explains. PCV13, on the other hand, is a conjugate vaccine that protects against 13 strains of pneumococcal bacteria. PCV13 induces immunologic memory, he says. Your body will remember that it has encountered an antigen 20 years from now and develop antibodies to fight it off.
In order to get the best protection against all strains of bacteria that cause pneumonia, the CDC has long recommended that everyone 65 or older receive both vaccines: PCV13 , followed by the pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine at a later visit. But the agency is now saying that PCV13 may not be necessary for healthy people 65 and older, suggesting that the decision be left up to patients and their physicians as to whether that extra skin prick is appropriate.
“Anyone who reaches the age of 65 and is in any way immunocompromised or has any of the listed indications for pneumococcal vaccine because they’re in a high-risk group for example, if they have diabetes, heart disease or lung disease, or are a smoker should continue to get both vaccines, says Schaffner.
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Should You Get The Pneumonia Vaccine
New guidelines say those 65 and up need two shots to ward off this disease
It’s the time of year for colds and other respiratory illnesses. Most are mild. But if you or your parent have a fever, cough, chest pain and trouble breathing, it could be pneumonia, a much more serious disease especially for those over 65.
Pneumonia is a lung infection that can cause severe illness or death. About one in five people who get pneumonia outside of a healthcare setting need to be hospitalized. That’s why it’s important for all people 65 and older to get vaccinated against the disease.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued new recommendations that people 65 and up should get two shots, spaced six to 12 months apart.
Why Get the Shots?
About 1 million people are hospitalized with pneumonia in the U.S. each year and 50,000 people die of it. Most are adults.
A bacterium called pneumococcus is one of the most common causes of severe pneumonia. It can also cause meningitis and bacteremia, or blood stream infection. The latter two are usually very severe, causing hospitalization or even death.
The good news: The two pneumococcal vaccines can be very valuable for preventing severe disease. The shot given first is the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, also known by the brand name Prevnar13. The second shot is the pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine, or Pneumovax.
Symptoms of Pneumonia
Other symptoms may include nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
How Long Does The Pneumonia Vaccine Last
For most adults, one dose of the pneumonia vaccine should last a lifetime. In other words, you wont usually need to get another dose. This makes it different to the flu vaccine, which is given every year.
For some people, boosters of the pneumonia vaccine will be needed. This will be the case for people who have underlying health conditions that make them high-risk for pneumonia and related conditions. Your doctor will let you know if you need another vaccine.
If youre somebody who needs top-ups of the pneumonia vaccine, youll be able to receive them for free on the NHS.
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How Should I Approach Getting Vaccinated
Prioritizing is the name of the game plan during 2021 and 2022. Everyone really should’ve had the COVID vaccine by nowif they haven’t or they’re still sort of sitting on the fence, then preferably, the sooner the better, Dr. Wolfe says. Then, flu and/or pneumonia as you come into the winter.” Shingles is not seasonally dependent, “but people should talk to their doctor about it.
Ideally, you can piggybank some of these vaccines together. For instance, COVID with flu, or flu with pneumonia, or shingles with flu. For many years, we’ve done flu and pneumonia together, Dr. Wolfe says. I think trying to give people three vaccines at once is probably asking for a bit much, but certainly two at once can be done with no concerns.
How Does The Pneumonia Vaccine Work
There are currently two vaccines administered in the United States:
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What Is A Pneumococcal Vaccine
A pneumococcal vaccine is an injection that can prevent pneumococcal disease. A pneumococcal disease is any illness that is caused by pneumococcal bacteria, including pneumonia. In fact, the most common cause of pneumonia is pneumococcal bacteria. This type of bacteria can also cause ear infections, sinus infections, and meningitis.
Adults age 65 or older are amongst the highest risk groups for getting pneumococcal disease.
To prevent pneumococcal disease, there are two types of pneumococcal vaccines: the pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine and the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine .
Who Should Have The Pneumococcal Vaccine
Anyone can get a pneumococcal infection. But some people are at higher risk of serious illness, so it’s recommended they’re given the pneumococcal vaccination on the NHS.
- adults aged 65 or over
- children and adults with certain long-term health conditions, such as a serious heart or kidney condition
Babies are offered 2 doses of pneumococcal vaccine, at 12 weeks and at 1 year of age.
People aged 65 and over only need a single pneumococcal vaccination. This vaccine is not given annually like the flu jab.
If you have a long-term health condition you may only need a single, one-off pneumococcal vaccination, or a vaccination every 5 years, depending on your underlying health problem.
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Who Should Not Get The Pneumonia Vaccine
Again, its best to determine this with your doctor, but as a general rule the CDC states you should not get the pneumococcal vaccine if:
- You or your child has had a severe or life-threatening allergy to the current PCV13 or Prevnar 13®) vaccine, the past PCV7 vaccine or any vaccine containing diphtheria toxoid.
- You or your child are currently battling a severe illness.
Medicare Coverage For The Pneumonia Shot
Part B of Original Medicare does cover the pneumonia vaccine, but there are certain limitations, according to Medicare.gov:
- Medicare Part B covers one shot. Anybody who is enrolled in Part B is entitled to a dose of pneumonia vaccine without having to pay for it if your health-care provider accepts Medicare assignment.
- Under certain circumstances, a doctor may prescribe a second shot of a different typeat least one year after the first dose. Part B may also cover this second dose.
- In either situation described above, you typically wont have out-of-pocket costs as a Part B beneficiary.
In some cases, a doctor may recommend more doses than the amount that Part B pays for. For example, a doctor may suggest a second dose of the PPSV23 vaccine. In this case, its possible that a Medicare Supplement or Medicare Advantage plan will provide coverage. Otherwise, you might have to pay for these additional services out of pocket. If the cost is a concern, its a good idea to contact Medicare or your Medicare plan to learn how these additional services will be covered or if they will be covered at all.
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Who Should Get The Pneumonia Shot
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone over the age of 65 which includes most Medicare beneficiaries should get the Pneumovax 23 vaccine.
Who Should Get the Pneumovax 23 Shot?
- All people age 65 or older
- Cigarette smokers between the ages of 19 through 64
- People between 2 and 64 years old with certain medical conditions
The Prevnar 13 vaccine is generally recommended for children younger than 2 years old or for older people with certain medical conditions.
The CDC suggests anyone 65 and older can ask for the Prevnar 13 vaccine if they decide with their doctor that it would be beneficial to them.
What Is The Pneumococcal Vaccine And How Often Should You Get It
Both pneumococcal vaccines approved for use in the United States protect against multiple types of bacteria that can cause pneumonia. The schedule for taking them depends on your age and medical conditions.
Differences Between Pneumococcal Vaccinations
- Pneumovax 23
- Pneumovax 23 protects against 23 types of serious pneumococcal bacterial infections. Most adults will need only one shot of PPSV23 in their lifetime. But the CDC recommends up to two additional shots for adults with certain chronic medical conditions.
- Prevnar 13
- Prevnar 13 protects against the 13 most common types of pneumococcal bacteria that cause the most common serious infections in children and adults. Adults will receive this shot only if they have certain medical conditions and with the advice of their doctor. While children receive seven doses by the time they are 15 months old, adults who get this vaccine will only receive one shot of PCV13 in their lifetime.
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When Is The Best Time To Get The Vaccine
For older individuals, some experts say it may be best to get the shot before reaching 65 years of age — anytime after 50 years of age. They base this opinion on the fact that the younger you are, the better able your body is to mount a protective immune response. For those who receive an annual flu shot, the pneumococcal vaccine can safely be given at the same time.
Other adults and children who are at high risk of pneumococcal disease should consult their physicians. Generally, however, individuals who are scheduled for cancer chemotherapy or immunosuppressive therapy should wait at least two weeks after receiving pneumococcal vaccine to start therapy. The safety of pneumococcal vaccine for pregnant women has not been evaluated. Ideally, at-risk women should be vaccinated before they get pregnant.
How Do You Get Tetanus
Tetanus is a serious disease caused by bacteria called Clostridium tetani.
The spores of the bacteria live in soil, dust, saliva, and manure. If an open cut or wound is exposed to the spores, they can enter your body.
Once inside the body, the spores produce toxic bacteria that affects muscles and nerves. Tetanus is sometimes called lockjaw because of the stiffness it can cause in the neck and jaw.
The most common scenario for catching tetanus is stepping on a dirty nail or sharp shard of glass or wood that pierces through the skin.
Puncture wounds are most prone to tetanus because theyre narrow and deep. Oxygen can help kill the spores of the bacteria, but unlike gaping cuts, puncture wounds dont allow oxygen much access.
Other ways you may develop tetanus:
- contaminated needles
- wounds with dead tissue, such as burns or frostbite
- a wound thats not cleaned thoroughly
You cant catch tetanus from someone who has it. Its not spread from person to person.
The time between exposure to tetanus and the appearance of symptoms ranges between a few days to a few months.
Most people with tetanus will experience symptoms within
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How Often Do I Need To Get The Pneumonia Vaccine
The pneumonia vaccine also known as the pneumococcal vaccine offers protection against several strains of bacteria that can cause pneumonia. There are two types of the vaccine, one of which is specifically designed for adults over the age of 65 and anyone particularly high-risk because of a long-term health condition. The other vaccine Prevnar 13 is available in our stores for adults aged 18 and over.*
Most adults getting the pneumonia vaccine will only need to get it once. Others who are high risk may need to get booster jabs every few years.
If youve never had the pneumonia vaccine, and you think you could benefit, you should check to see if youre eligible for it on the NHS. If not, you can book yours with us and have it in your local LloydsPharmacy.
Types Of Pneumonia Vaccine
The pneumococcal conjugate vaccine also known as Prevenar 13 offers protection against 13 strains of pneumococcal bacteria. This type is given to young children as part of their routine NHS vaccinations. Its also available for adults under 65 through our vaccination service.
The pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine also known as Pneumovax 23 offers protection against 23 strains of pneumococcal bacteria. This type is given to adults over 65 and anyone with a very high risk of pneumonia.
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Pneumococcal Diseases & Pneumonia Shots
There is a category of diseases called pneumococcal disease, of which pneumonia is one of the most dangerousthe other most dangerous being meningitis. People with diabetes are about three times more likely to die with flu and pneumococcal diseases, yet most dont get a simple, safe pneumonia shot.
Symptoms of pneumonia include:
Cough that can produce mucus that is gray, yellow, or streaked with blood Chest pain
About Author: Ken Harris
Ken Harris is the proudest father and a writing coordinator for the Marketing & Communications division of OSF HealthCare.He has a bachelor’s in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and worked as a daily newspaper reporter for four years before leaving the field and eventually finding his way to OSF HealthCare.In his free time, Ken likes reading, fly fishing, hanging out with his dog and generally pestering his lovely, patient wife.
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People With Health Problems And The Pneumococcal Vaccine
The PPV vaccine is available on the NHS for children and adults aged from 2 to 64 years old who are at a higher risk of developing a pneumococcal infection than the general population.
This is generally the same people who are eligible for annual flu vaccination.
You’re considered to be at a higher risk of a pneumococcal infection if you have:
- a suppressed immune system caused by a health condition, such as HIV
- a suppressed immune system caused by medicines, such as chemotherapy or steroid tablets
- a cochlear implant Action on Hearing Loss has more information about cochlear implants
- had a leak of cerebrospinal fluid this could be the result of an accident or surgery
Adults and children who are severely immunocompromised usually have a single dose of PCV followed by PPV.