Get your chickenpox vaccination at Well Pharmacy
You can book a chickenpox vaccine at a selection of our community pharmacies. Want to learn more? Here we explain what it is, who’s at risk of chickenpox and how to know if the vaccine is the right choice for you.
Chickenpox is a disease caused by a viral infection. This disease is more properly known as varicella, as chickenpox is caused by an infection of the varicella zoster virus. It is highly contagious and a common infection that most people catch in their childhood. Over 90% of people in the UK have had it.
For most people, the disease is relatively mild. However, in rare cases chickenpox can cause more serious complications.
Although the spots caused by chickenpox can be distractingly itchy, these symptoms usually pass within a week. Complications are rare for the majority of people.
Chickenpox is highly contagious, meaning it’s very easy to catch.
You catch chickenpox by coming into contact with the varicella zoster virus that causes it. This can happen if someone who is infected sneezes or coughs, and you breathe in droplets they’ve expelled that have the virus in it. You can also catch the virus by touching an infected person’s skin or by touching something they’ve recently touched.
People are most contagious from two days before their spots appear and until their spots crust over. This means people can spread the virus before they know they’re infected.
Anyone can catch chickenpox if they’ve not already had it. For most people it is a mild infection but in rare cases, chickenpox can cause more serious complications. These can include bacterial skin infections, pneumonia and heart problems. Those at most risk include:
The NHS recommends the chickenpox jab should be given to:
In these instances, the chickenpox vaccine is given more to protect vulnerable people around you, than to protect yourself. However, our vaccination service is available to anyone looking to protect themselves from the infection, as well as those eligible for the NHS service.
Our chickenpox vaccination service may be suitable for adults and children who:
Patients aged two to 12 will receive two doses of the vaccine:
Patients aged 13 to 64 will receive two doses of the vaccine:
In children who have had both doses of the chickenpox vaccine, the vast majority develop lifelong immunity to chickenpox.
In teenagers and adults, around three quarters of people who have had the chickenpox vaccine develop a lifelong immunity.
There is no chickenpox vaccine that is recommended for babies under nine months of age.
The chickenpox vaccine is usually given to children two or over, but in some circumstances can be given to children aged nine months to two years.
If you want to know more about the chickenpox vaccine, read our helpful guides on the costs.
If you have other questions, or you would like to talk to someone face-to-face, then our pharmacists are more than happy to answer any questions you have about the chickenpox vaccine. Find your nearest Well Pharmacy.
If you are a parent or guardian booking on behalf of someone who is less than 16 years old, you must attend their appointment with them, or our pharmacist reserves the right to not provide the vaccination.