On this page
Pneumococcal meningitis is a notifiable disease.
Pneumococcal disease is a respiratory infection often presenting as pneumonia or acute otitis media, which can become invasive causing bacteraemia or rarely meningitis. Pneumococcal disease is caused by the bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae, of which there are many different serotypes, and mainly affects the very young and very old. The organism is spread by respiratory droplets and has a poorly defined incubation period which may be as short as one to three days.
The Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV) Routine Childhood Immunisation Programme commenced in September 2006 for infants aged two and four months old with a booster at around thirteen months old. In April 2010 PCV 13 replaced PCV 7. In January 2020 following a review by the Joint Committee on Immunisation and Vaccination (JCVI) the PCV routine childhood vaccination schedule was revised and implemented:
The UK PCV immunisation programme has successfully achieved high levels of protection from the 13 pneumococcal serotypes contained in the vaccine.
PCV vaccine may be required in individuals who have underlying medical conditions.
Please refer to Pneumococcal: the green book, chapter 25 - GOV.UK.
PCV contains polysaccharide from thirteen common capsular types (PCV 13). It is indicated for active immunisation for the prevention of invasive disease, pneumonia and acute otitis media caused by Streptococcus pneumonia.
Prevenar 13 (PCV 13) is an inactivated injectable vaccine in a pre-filled syringe presentation.
More information about the vaccine, including eligible groups, dosing and method of administration can be found at Pneumococcal: the green book, chapter 25 - GOV.UK.
Schedule guidance in the Green Book chapter 25 supersedes the summary of product characteristics.
The Complete Routine Immunisation Schedule (PDF) includes information about routine and non-routine vaccinations.
Vaccination programme recommendations from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) and Welsh Government policy can be found at the links below.
Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation - GOV.UK (read JCVI publications and statements; search e.g. pneumococcal)
Online courses and training materials about a number of vaccines and diseases can be accessed via the E-learning page.
Further immunisation training information and resources are provided on the Training Resources and Events page.
PGD templates for vaccines can be found on the Patient group directions (PGDs) and protocols page.