Community pharmacies will be able to use the two current flu vaccines for next year’s flu season, officials have said.
In a joint letter written last week (20 November), NHS England and Public Health England (PHE) recommended pharmacies and GP practices to use the quadrivalent inactivated vaccine (QIV) and the adjuvanted trivalent inactivate vaccine (aTIV) for 2019/20.
Pharmacists will be expected to use each of the two vaccines for specific patient groups.
Early November, NHS England revealed that the supply of aTIV – also known as Fluad – for the over-65s was set to ‘exceed anticipated requirements’.
Using the same vaccines
The letter read: ‘Both of the vaccines that were recommended for the 2018/19 season will continue to be recommended for next year.
‘Both vaccines are currently licensed and available to order for use in the United Kingdom (UK):
– the quadrivalent inactivated vaccine (QIV) will continue to be recommended for 18 to 64 year olds in clinical at-risk groups and other eligible groups, including frontline health and social care workers.
– the adjuvanted trivalent inactivated vaccine (aTIV) will continue to be recommended for individuals aged 65 years and over.’
However, NHS England and PHE pointed out that the standard trivalent vaccines (TIVe) – which was previously known as TIV – are ‘not to be used in any age or clinical at-risk group’.
New vaccinations for 2019/20
To determine which vaccine to use for 2019/20, see below. (Source: NHS England)
NHS England said that pharmacies should start ordering the currently licensed vaccines but not take any steps for the QIVs and TIV-HD before more information is released.