Administering Hib Vaccines

This page provides a brief summary of guidance for administering Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) vaccines, including route, number of doses, and co-administration with other vaccines.

Visual Inspection

Do not use any Hib vaccine or diluent (if applicable) beyond the expiration date printed on the label.

Prior to administration, visually inspect the vaccine for particulate matter and/or discoloration. If these conditions exist, do NOT use.

Administering Vaccines

Route, Site, and Needle Size

Administer all Hib-containing vaccines by the intramuscular route. The preferred injection site in infants and young children is the vastus lateralis muscle of the thigh. The preferred injection site in older children and adults is the deltoid muscle in the upper arm. Use a needle length appropriate for the age and size of the person receiving the vaccine.

Number and Timing of Doses

All infants, including preterm infants, should receive a primary series of Hib vaccine beginning at 2 months of age. Do not administer Hib vaccine to infants younger than 6 weeks of age because this may induce immunologic tolerance to further doses of Hib vaccine. The number of doses in the primary series depends on the brand of Hib vaccine used:

  • If ActHIB®, Hiberix®, Pentacel®, or Vaxelis™ is used, give 3 doses:
    • 1 dose at 2 months of age
    • 1 dose at 4 months of age
    • 1 dose at 6 months of age
  • If PedvaxHIB® is used, give 2 doses:
    • 1 dose at 2 months of age
    • 1 dose at 4 months of age

CDC recommends a booster dose at 12 through 15 months of age for all infants. Vaxelisshould not be used for the booster dose. You may use ActHIB®, Hiberix®, Pentacel®, or PedvaxHIB® for the booster dose.

Predrawing Vaccine Doses

There are no data on the stability of vaccines stored in syringes filled by healthcare professionals. Therefore, CDC does not recommend predrawing vaccine doses. Do not open vaccine vials until time of administration.

After reconstitution administer:

  • ActHIB® within 24 hours or discard.
  • Hiberix® within 24 hours or discard.
  • Pentacel® immediately (within 30 minutes) or discard.

Administration with Other Vaccines

You can administer a Hib vaccine at the same time as other routine childhood vaccinations. However, administer each vaccine using a separate syringe and, if possible, at a different injection site. Researchers have not observed any clinically significant immune interference from administering Hib vaccines with other routine childhood vaccines during the same visit.

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