You're eligible for the shingles vaccine when you're aged 70 to 79.
When you're eligible, you can have the shingles vaccination at any time of year.
The shingles vaccine is not available on the NHS to anyone aged 80 and over because it seems to be less effective in this age group.
Is there anyone who should not have the shingles vaccination?
There are 2 shingles vaccines available in the UK:
- Zostavax, a live vaccine given as 1 dose
- Shingrix, a non-live vaccine given as 2 doses
If Zostavax is not suitable for you, a GP or practice nurse will decide whether to offer you Shingrix instead.
You should not have the shingles vaccine if you've had a serious allergic reaction (including an anaphylactic reaction) in the past to a previous dose of the shingles vaccine, or to any of the ingredients in the vaccine, or to a previous dose of varicella (chickenpox) vaccine.
If you have a weakened immune system a GP or practice nurse will assess which vaccine is suitable for you. Discuss any health concerns with the GP or practice nurse before you have the vaccine.
Zostavax is not suitable for people who have a weakened immune system due to a condition, treatment or medicine.
The shingles vaccine and other vaccines
You can have a shingles vaccine at the same time as most other vaccines. But try to leave 7 days between the shingles vaccine and a coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine, so that if you have any side effects you'll know which vaccine they were from.
Get answers to shingles vaccine frequently asked questions (FAQs).
Page last reviewed: 31 August 2021
Next review due: 31 August 2024