MenB Vaccine

Do I? Don’t I? That is my biggest torment at the moment.

Right now, I should be focusing on university work and controlling toddler tantrums, but after various news reports and Facebook campaigns, i’m consumed with the thought of do I pay privately for Lily to receive that MenB Vaccine?

Currently the NHS are only giving the vaccine to babies born on or after 1 May 2015 as a catch up for their current set of immunisations, but for older children, the NHS will not give it to you. As Lily was born in September 2013, she doesn’t qualify for the NHS round of vaccines, but you can have the jab done privately (at a cost).

My question is should we get her an appointment for the vaccine?

I’m worry that by not having it, Lily will be more open to catching the virus. I’m also worried about any possible effects it may have. With the NHS offering the vaccine to small children, could this mean that it’s not safe for older children or less effective. Even now (Feb. 24 2016) It has been announced that MPs will be discussing whether or not to give the vaccine to ALL children after pictures of a young girl (the same age as Lily) suffering from MenB were posted online.

Unfortunately, this little girl could not fight it, but it has been argued that she may have been able to had she received the vaccine. A debate is to be scheduled once the House of Commons has heard from families elected by the virus. This will hopefully lead to MPs taking part in the debate to be well informed of the situation and dilemma in hand.

I am torn and feel that this is my biggest challenge as a mother so far. I have always respected the NHS and felt that if they say to avoid something, it is surely for a good reason. This however, I don’t know. I don’t want to accept that they won’t give it to my daughter, for her to then catch the virus and I could have got her the vaccine.

As parents, our main duty is to protect our children. My second major problem is the cost. We’re not a well off family. We get by and a few pounds left over for small treats, but vaccine cost a lot and this would involve more than one jab. You can’t pay for one, wait for the second one, then not do it because you can’t pay. You need to be prepared for both. By possibly not being able to do this for financial issues, I feel like I am failing in my duty to protect Lily.

I’m hoping i’m not the only one with mixed thoughts over this. Part of me is thinking of waiting to see if they open the vaccine programme up to all children, but that could take a long time. One piece of advice I would give is to get some advice from your GP. I am arranging an appointment with my GP to see if he thinks it would be a good idea or a bad idea.

Please share your thoughts and advice with us in the the comments section and I’ll be looking out for more updates in the MP debate for everyone.

*UPDATE*

Afternoon speaking to my GP, I thought i’d share with you what he said.

He made two main points:

  1. The vaccine is being given to young babies as they struggle to fight the infection if caught and that over the years, the programme may be expanded.
  2. Private clinic waiting lists are so long because there is a restricted amount of the vaccine available on the UK.
  3. He also gave me an NHS advice page which says that the vaccine covers 90% of MenB strains.
  4. Finally,  he said that it isn’t urgent that I get it for Lily, but if I want to and it would put my mind at rest, then it would be fine.

if you do have any questions at all about the vaccine, then I really do encourage you to speak to your GP. It really is a helpful consultation.

7 thoughts on “MenB Vaccine

  1. Mel (Hippo256) says:

    I don’t know about this disease or the vaccin, but I think going to the GP and doing some research (on the internet) is a good idea. It’s possible that it’s less effective when they’re older, for some vaccines that counts. But I’m pretty sure there should be information about that, maybe from the government? And of course research how effective this vaccine really is. Sometimes there are like 99 different virus mutations that cause it, but the vaccine only works against 1 for 50%. It’s also possible they’re just doing this, because otherwise it would be too expensive. And maybe older children have a less high risk.

    But I don’t know anything about this disease or vaccin. I think it’s good that you’re thinking about it and doing research. Of course you only want the best for your family. I hope you’ll find some more information and can make a well-considered decision.

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  2. Kaye says:

    We were ready to pay privately for Archie to have it but there’s a nationwide shortage until at least June and no waiting list for any private hospitals close to us. I’m just praying they do let all children receive the vaccine. 😟

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  3. Natalie says:

    Hi, great and interesting article. Just thought I’d join in with this discussion! I decided to pay for my son to have the jab. My son was vaccinated before the issue of men b was particularly ‘explosive’ in the media in recent weeks. (A friend who lived in Europe encouraged me to research the jab last summer). He was given his first vaccination last November when he was 11 months old. He has since had his second dose. All this at a cost of £125 per jab as he was too old to qualify for the jab on the NHS. He is due his booster later this year. It was a price we were willing to pay for his protection although it wasn’t easy. I believe the reason the jab is only given to babies is ultimately down to costs and not because of effectiveness. I was told my son would have effective protection from this jab by my doctor. I too have always trusted and relied heavily on NHS advice and I believe the NHS has a core of excellence within it. However on this particular issue I think they are letting our children down by failing to add this to the catch up vaccination programme for all children. They have introduced this new vaccine slowly but this vaccine can save lives and could be given to all children if they found the finances and resources to do so. By the way, my son tolerated this vaccine very well with no major side effects. He reacted far worse to the MMR. Thanks for writing the article and allowing space for us readers to contribute 🙂

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