Experts gathered in Barcelona during the Pediatric Vaccination Forum: Rotavirus and Varicella, have concluded that giving a second dose of varicella vaccine increases the effectiveness of vaccination and guarantees long-term protection.

To achieve this greater effectiveness, the first dose should be administered between 12 and 15 months of age and the second before 3 or 4 years, as indicated by the coordinator of the day, the pediatrician Josep Marès, professor of pediatrics at the University Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) and specialist at the Vall d'Hebron Hospital in Barcelona Fernando Moraga.

"To prevent this disease we have a very effective and well tolerated vaccine that prevents up to 85 percent of all forms of chickenpox and more than 95 percent of severe forms of the disease," Moraga stressed.

After administration of the second dose, the effectiveness increases and long-term protection is guaranteed, so that the probability that a child who has been given the two full doses suffering from severe varicella is "practically nil," has asserted this pediatrician.

Currently, most of the autonomous communities administer the vaccine against chickenpox to children between 10 and 14 years who have not had the disease or have not been vaccinated before. However, at that age many of them have already suffered, so that vaccination at these ages does not reduce the burden of the disease or most of the complications of it.

Only Madrid, Navarre, Ceuta and Melilla include vaccination between 12 and 15 months of age. In the opinion of Dr. Moraga, "the vaccine is more effective the sooner it is administered, and it does not make much sense to vaccinate at 10 or 11 years, when many children have already suffered the disease."


June 2017 ACIP Meeting - Herpes Zoster ; Varicella; Anthrax Vaccine Workgroup; Vaccine supply (November 2019).