Vaccine for Herpes Zoster, commonly known as Shingles, is again available.

Shingles is a reactivation of the chickenpox virus (varicella-zoster virus) in a person who has previously had chickenpox.

It presents as rash and blisters, usually on one side of the body or face, and can be extremely painful.

About Shingles vaccine


What is shingles?

Herpes zoster, commonly known as shingles, is a reactivation of the varicella-zoster virus (VZV) in a person who has previously had varicella (chickenpox). Anyone who has had chickenpox can develop shingles because the virus remains in the nerve cells of the body after an attack of chickenpox.

About one in 3 people will get shingles in their lifetime. Shingles usually affects older people, and the risk of complications increases with age.

Who should receive the Shingles vaccine?

Vaccination against Shingles is recommended for:

  • People over 65
  • First Nations people aged 50 years and over
  • Immunocompromised people aged 18 years and over.
How many doses are required?

Two doses of Shingrix vaccine are required for protection against shingles, administered between two and six months apart.

How much does the Shingrix vaccine cost?

Bendigo UFS Pharmacies provides Shingrix vaccine (a two-dose course, administered 2-6 months apart) free of charge under the National Immunisation Program (NIP) to the following groups:

  • People aged 65 years and over
  • First Nations people aged 50 years and over
  • Immunocompromised people aged 18 years and over with the following medical conditions:

-haematopoietic stem cell transplant
-solid organ transplant
-haematological malignancy
-advanced or untreated HIV.

For people not eligible for Shingrix under the NIP, the charge for Bendigo UFS members is $329.35 and for non-member the cost is $365.95.

What if I have previously been vaccinated with Zostavax?

If you previously received a free Zostavax shingles vaccine under the NIP, you are not eligible for a free Shingrix vaccine for at least five years. If you purchased the Zostavax vaccine privately, you can receive Shingrix for free under the program if you’re eligible. But you should wait at least 12 months between receiving Zostavax and getting the Shingrix vaccine.

here can I learn more about Shingles?

We recommend visiting the Victorian Government’s Better Health Channel as a great information source.
To locate Shingles information at Betterhealth directly visit here


Page last updated May 17 2024