Free Shingles Vaccine for 70 year olds
From the 1st of November 2016, the Federal Government is funding a program to offer a free shingles vaccine (called Zostavax) to 70 year olds, with a 5 year catch up program for people aged between 70 and 79.
Shingles is more than just a rash. The pain can be excruciating and up to 20% of sufferers can go on to develop ongoing nerve pain in the area called postherpatic neuralgia (PHN). This can last for months and is the most common complication of shingles. Zostavax has shown to reduce the incidence of PHN by 60%.
Zostavax is generally a well-tolerated vaccine given in a single dose and is the first and only shingles vaccine.