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The varicella-zoster virus that causes chickenpox is a highly contagious virus spread through contact with an infected person or by touching something with the virus. The best way to avoid catching chickenpox is to avoid contact with someone who has it and to ensure you are up-to-date on your vaccinations.
The chickenpox vaccine is not part of the routine childhood vaccination schedule. It is currently only offered on the NHS to people in close contact with someone particularly vulnerable to chickenpox or its complications. However, we offer this vaccine as a private service at Midway Pharmacy.
Who can have the chickenpox vaccine?
At Midway Pharmacy, our chickenpox vaccination service is suitable for adults and children who:
Haven’t already had the vaccine
Haven’t had chickenpox before
Are between one and 65 years old
Are not pregnant or breastfeeding
Are not immunocompromised (a weakened immune system)
Haven’t had an allergic reaction to a vaccine before
Haven't had a temperature in the 24 hours leading up to the appointment
How this service works
Select your preferred service option and book an appointment
Follow the link in your booking confirmation email to fill out the patient questionnaire (at least 12 hours before your appointment)
One of our prescribers will review the completed questionnaire and contact you to discuss this
Visit the branch at the selected date and time to receive the vaccine
Available service options
£82.50 per patient
The chickenpox vaccine is given as two separate injections, usually into the upper arm, 4 to 8 weeks apart. However, if you have had the first dose or find it more convenient to pay for one dose at a time, you can select this service option.
£155 per patient
The chickenpox vaccine is given as two separate injections, usually into the upper arm, 4 to 8 weeks apart. You can book both doses at the same time for a discounted price.
What our customers think
5 out of 5 stars
The Pharmacist who checked my BP was friendly and helpful and answered a query. It only took a few moments to check.
5 out of 5 stars
Thank you so much you did great would recommend to anyone.keep up the good professional work.
5 out of 5 stars
Excellent service definitely would recommend, managed to get me appointment same day young lady was so professional in explaining and carrying out the treatment, feeling much better now, thank you.
5 out of 5 stars
Excellent service received at Midway pharmacy Middleton Leeds yesterday both ears were totally blocked and the young girl that performed the syringing was friendly and explained what was happening clearly and efficiently all done in 10 minutes can hear again now fantastic!
Frequently asked questions
Who is at risk from chickenpox?
People whose immune systems are weak because of HIV or treatments like chemotherapy and pregnant women are more likely to have severe problems after getting chickenpox.
How effective is the chickenpox vaccine?
9 out of 10 children vaccinated with a single dose will develop immunity against chickenpox. Two doses are recommended, as this gives an even better immune response. The vaccination is less effective after childhood. It's estimated that three-quarters of vaccinated teenagers and adults will become resistant to chickenpox.
Are there any side effects of the chickenpox vaccine?
The most common side effects of the chickenpox vaccine are:
Soreness and redness around the injection site happen in around 1 in 5 children and 1 in 4 teenagers and adults
A mild rash – this occurs in 1 in 10 children and 1 in 20 adults
Serious side effects of the chickenpox vaccine, such as a severe allergic reaction, are rare. Millions of doses of the vaccine have been given, and there is no evidence of any increased risk of developing a long-term health condition due to the vaccination.
How does the chickenpox vaccine work?
The chickenpox vaccine is a "live vaccine" and contains a small amount of weakened chickenpox-causing virus. The vaccine stimulates your immune system to produce antibodies that will help protect against chickenpox.
Can I get chickenpox multiple times?
Once you have had chickenpox, it is not likely that you will contract the virus again. It is possible to get chickenpox more than once, but it's unusual.
Can I get the chickenpox vaccine free on the NHS?
Chickenpox vaccinations are provided free on the NHS where there's a clinical need, such as for healthy people who are not immune to chickenpox and are in close contact with someone with a weakened immune system.
You cannot get the chickenpox vaccine free on the NHS if you want to prevent your child from catching chickenpox, and there are no other associated health risks.
Midway Pharmacy offers a private chickenpox vaccination service.
If people in 'at-risk' groups cannot have the vaccine, what treatments are available if they're exposed to chickenpox?
People with weakened immune systems and pregnant women without immunity who are exposed to chickenpox can be given a medication called varicella zoster immunoglobulin (VZIG). Contact your GP to find out more about this treatment.
I recently had the chickenpox vaccine and found out I'm pregnant. What should I do?
If you find out you're pregnant within a month of having the chickenpox vaccine, it's best to contact your GP for advice.
Why is the chickenpox vaccination not part of the routine childhood immunisation schedule?
There is a worry that introducing chickenpox vaccination for all children could increase the risk of chickenpox and shingles in adults because people would not catch chickenpox as children.
Can you give the chickenpox vaccine and MMR vaccine together at the same time?
If these vaccines are not administered on the same day, then a four-week minimum interval should be observed between vaccines.
Can you get shingles from chickenpox?
You cannot catch shingles from someone with chickenpox, but you can catch chickenpox from someone with shingles if you have not had chickenpox before.
When you get chickenpox, the virus stays in your body and can be triggered again if your immune system weakens, which causes shingles. This can happen because of stress, certain conditions, or treatments like chemotherapy.
What are the stages of chickenpox?
Chickenpox happens in 3 stages:
Stage 1: small spots appear
Stage 2: the spots become blisters
Stage 3: the blisters become scabs
What are the symptoms of chickenpox?
An itchy, spotty rash is the main symptom of chickenpox. It can be anywhere on the body, and new spots can appear while others are becoming blisters or forming a scab. Before or after the rash appears, you might also get a high temperature, aches and pains, and generally feel unwell and lose appetite.
Chickenpox is very itchy and can make children feel miserable, even if they do not have many spots. The chickenpox spots look the same on children and adults. But adults usually have a high temperature for longer and more spots than children.
What is the incubation period for chickenpox?
The average incubation period is 14 to 16 days after exposure to someone who has a chickenpox rash, with a range of 10 to 21 days.
When is chickenpox contagious?
You can spread chickenpox to other people from 2 days before your spots appear until they have all formed scabs – usually, five days after your spots appear.
Where is this service available?
This service is available in our branches, which are commutable from anywhere in Yorkshire, including Leeds, Bradford, Wakefield, York, Huddersfield, Sheffield, Barnsley, Hull, Doncaster, Ripon, Harrogate, Dewsbury, Keighley and Scarborough.
Are next-day appointments available?
Yes, you can get next-day appointments at all our branches. Contact our customer care team if you cannot find an available slot.
Next-day appointments are available at our branches.