David Winnick – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Department of Health

The below Parliamentary question was asked by David Winnick on 2016-02-24.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans he has to urgently consult with medical authorities on ensuring a meningitis B vaccine is provided to all young children; and if he will make a statement.

Jane Ellison

National immunisation programmes are introduced on the advice of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), the independent expert body that advises the Government on all immunisation matters. JCVI’s recommendations are based on a comprehensive and careful review of a wide range of evidence including information from medical experts.

JCVI reviewed the available evidence on meningitis B vaccine and recommended a national Meningococcal B (MenB) immunisation programme for infants. The MenB vaccine is first offered to babies at 2 months of age, with further doses offered when they reach 4 and 12 months of age.

MenB was introduced into the NHS programme in September 2015. JCVI keeps the eligibility criteria of all vaccination programmes under review and considers new evidence as it becomes available. If JCVI provides further advice about the programme, we will consider this.