Over 65s

Can I give the QIVc vaccine to a patient aged 65 years or older?

Numark’s Information Services team have been receiving calls from Numark members asking the same question of whether they could administer the QIVc vaccine to a patient aged 65 years or older if they are awaiting a delivery or have run out of aQIV.

The guidance from the NHS and the influenza community pharmacy Patient Group Directions (PGD) require patients aged 65 years to be offered the adjuvanted Quadrivalent Influenza vaccine (aQIV) vaccination, because it is considered to be more effective in this age group than the non-adjuvanted vaccine.  The PGD does also state that the cell-grown Quadrivalent Influenza Vaccine (QIVc) and recombinant Quadrivalent Influenza Vaccine (QIVr) are also be suitable for this age group if the aQIV is not available or not suitable due to egg allergy.

Before offering the QIVc vaccine, pharmacy contractors are advised to check if aQIV will be available in the near future or if it is available from another pharmacy or the patient’s general practice, it would clinically be more appropriate for them to access aQIV from another provider.

Any use of QIVc or QIVr in this age group, when aQIV is available elsewhere in the area or when the pharmacy is due a supply of aQIV in due course, would need to be with the patient’s informed agreement that QIVc and QIVr is being used instead of the aQIV.  The pharmacist must also have made a professional judgement that the administration of the QIVc or QIVr in in the patient’s best interests at that time.

If no aQIV is available and it is unlikely that further supplies will be available, the general use of QIVc or QIVr in this patient group would then be appropriate.