Frequently Asked Questions About Shingrix
Shingrix is the preferred shingles vaccine. You and patients should make every effort to ensure that two doses are administered within the recommended 2-6 month interval. If more than 6 months have elapsed since the first dose, administer the second dose as soon as possible. Do not restart the vaccine series, and do not substitute Zostavax® (zoster vaccine live) for the second dose of Shingrix. If you are out of Shingrix and a patient needs a second dose, the Vaccine Finder may be helpful for patients to locate other providers who have Shingrix.
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- Is Shingrix currently on backorder?
- What is the clinical guidance during the Shingrix delay?
- How should I administer Shingrix?
- Do I need to reconstitute Shingrix?
- Where should I store Shingrix?
- How many doses of Shingrix do I give?
- How long should I wait after giving the first dose of Shingrix to give the second dose?
- What should I do if a patient waits longer than 6 months to get the second dose?
- How long after a person received Zostavax should I wait to give Shingrix?
- How long after a person received chickenpox vaccine should I wait to give Shingrix?
- Can I give Shingrix with other adult vaccines?
- Can Shingrix be administered to immunocompromised individuals?
- What are the primary differences between Shingrix and Zostavax?
A: Shingrix is the preferred shingles vaccine. You and patients should make every effort to ensure that two doses are administered within the recommended interval. If more than 6 months have elapsed since the first dose, administer the second dose as soon as possible. Do not restart the vaccine series, and do not substitute Zostavax® (zoster vaccine live) for the second dose of Shingrix. If you are out of Shingrix and a patient needs a second dose, the Vaccine Finder may be helpful for patients to locate other providers that have Shingrix.
Until demand can be met, it is particularly important that vaccine providers educate patients about the importance of completing the series. In addition, CDC reminds health care professionals of proven strategies to help patients receive all their needed vaccinations on time, including Shingrix:
- Implement a vaccine reminder and recall system using phone, e-mail, or text messages to contact patients when you have Shingrix supply. Give first consideration to patients due for their second dose of Shingrix. (https://www.thecommunityguide.org/findings/vaccination-programs-client-reminder-and-recall-systems)
- If you are out of Shingrix and a patient needs a second dose, refer the patient to another provider in the community (e.g., a pharmacy) that has Shingrix so the patient can complete the series. The immunization program at your state or local health department or vaccine finder can help identify other immunization providers.
- Be sure to enter your patients’ current vaccination information into your state’s immunization information system (IIS). This will ensure that every provider can access your patients’ immunization record, and it may help facilitate patient reminders to complete the Shingrix series.
- As supply becomes less constrained, be sure to notify eligible patients so they can come in to get their first dose of Shingrix.
CDC still recommends Zostavax® for healthy adults 60 years and older to prevent shingles. This shingles vaccine may be used in certain cases, such as when a person prefers Zostavax or requests immediate vaccination and Shingrix is unavailable. Patients who have received Zostavax are recommended to subsequently receive Shingrix. Age and time since receipt of Zostavax may be considered to determine when to vaccinate with Shingrix (minimum interval of 8 weeks).
A: You should give the second dose as soon as possible. However, you do not need to restart the vaccine series.
CDC Expert Commentary with Medscape
Everything You Need to Know About Shingrix
Dr. Kathleen Dooling discusses storage, administration, and patient counseling for the new shingles vaccine
Q: How long after a person received Zostavax—the shingles vaccine in use since 2006—should I wait to give Shingrix?
A: Studies confirmed that Shingrix was safe and immunogenic when administered 5 or more years after Zostavax. Intervals shorter than 5 years have not been studied. However, there are no data or theoretical concerns to indicate Shingrix would be less safe or effective when given less than 5 years after Zostavax. You may consider an interval shorter than 5 years, especially if your patient was >70 years old when they received Zostavax. Wait a minimum of 8 weeks after a person received Zostavax to give Shingrix.
|Characteristic||Shingrix (recombinant zoster vaccine [RZV], GlaxoSmithKline [GSK])||Zostavax (zoster vaccine live [ZVL], Merck)|
|Vaccine Type||Inactivated recombinant, adjuvanted (non-live)||Live attenuated|
|Vaccine Composition||Supplied as 2 components:
||Supplied as 2 components:
- Page last reviewed: March 26, 2018
- Page last updated: September 17, 2018
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