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Adults need booster vaccines every ten years

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Not all the vaccines we are given as children give lifelong protection. Some of the vaccines need booster doses in adulthood to maintain protection against disease.

Illustrasjonsfoto: Vaksinasjon
Foto: NTB Scanpix

Not all the vaccines we are given as children give lifelong protection. Some of the vaccines need booster doses in adulthood to maintain protection against disease.


Booster dose for vaccine against diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis and poliomyelitis

We recommend that adults should take the vaccine against diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis and poliomyelitis every ten years. The vaccines can be given together in one injection. The recommendation applies to all adults, not just those who intend to travel. 

The recommendation for a booster dose approximately every ten years is not just to to ensure individual protection but to maintain a high immunity in the population. When the majority of the population is protected against a disease, herd immunity is achieved that protects those who are unvaccinated. With low vaccination coverage, diseases that are currently under control in Norway (such as polio and diphtheria) could return.

The vaccine costs 300 Norwegian kroner. You may be charged a fee for the consultation to get the vaccine, this will vary depending on where you get the vaccine. 

Do I need a booster dose of the measles vaccine?

Most adults who were born and grew up in Norway are protected against measles, either because they are vaccinated or they have had the disease. The measles vaccine was introduced in the Childhood Immunisation Programme for one-year-olds in 1969, and as part of the MMR vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella for 6th grade schoolchildren in 1983.

These do not need the MMR vaccine: 

  • Born in 1970 or later: Those who know that they have followed the Childhood Immunisation Programme will have been offered the measles vaccine. More doses are not necessary.
  • Born in/after 1960 up to/including 1969: The majority will have had measles but after the measles vaccine was introduced, there were fewer cases of the disease. This means that some may lack protection because they either have not had the vaccine or had measles. In doubt, we recommend one dose of the MMR vaccine.
  • Born before 1960: The probability for having had measles is so high that the MMR vaccine is considered unnecessary.

Exception:

People born in 1970 or later are recommended to take one dose of the MMR vaccine in the following cases:

  • If they are unsure if they have followed the Childhood Immunisation Programme and had the measles/MMR vaccine, or if they do not know whether they have had the diseases. Most will then achieve long-term protection.

There is no increased risk of unwanted effects from the MMR vaccine for those who were already vaccinated or have had the diseases in the vaccine.

Do I need a booster dose of the other vaccines in the Childhood Immunisation Programme?

There is generally no need for booster doses of the other vaccines offered in the programme. In some cases, revaccination may be needed because of disease or medical treatment.

Where can you get a booster vaccine?

Contact your GP or travel vaccination clinic to arrange an appointment.

Unsure if you need a booster dose?

Log in to the vaccine service at helsenorge.no to check the vaccination status for you and your children under 16 years.

The status includes vaccinations that public health clinics, GPs or vaccination clinics have registered in the Norwegian Immunisation Registry SYSVAK. 

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