Patients prioritised for Hep B vaccine as global shortage hits UK supply - (The Herald via NewsPoints Desk)

  • UK officials are seeking to prioritise patients for a hepatitis B vaccine amid a global shortage, The Herald reported Tuesday.

  • Health Protection Scotland noted that the problem would be "particularly critical" this month but cautioned "there are likely to be some continuing limitations on supply until early 2018."

  • In response, Public Health England has created a temporary priority list to guide healthcare providers regarding the most pertinent populations to vaccine, with children born to hepatitis B virus-infected mothers being at the top of the list.

  • The second priority group consists of people who experienced a needle stick injury from a person with hepatitis B and people with known sexual exposure.

  • "Temporary recommendations on hepatitis B immunisation have been developed in light of recent global shortages of hepatitis B vaccine, including combination hepatitis A/B vaccine, which have severely impacted UK supply," Public Health England explained.

  • "The situation is under constant review, to help sustain supply for the rest of the year," commented Health Protection Scotland, continuing "[we] will keep stakeholders updated with any further developments."

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