From the Wellesley Health Department:
Wellesley Health Department will be offering the shingles vaccine to Wellesley residents 60 and older at clinics (at the Health Department) in the near future. You MUST have a prescription for the shingles vaccine from your primary care physician or healthcare provider. There will be a $25 fee.
If interested, please call the Health Department’s special shingles line 781.283.5730 and leave a voicemail with your name, address and telephone number. A postcard will be mailed to you with the clinic date and time.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended that people age 60 and older should be vaccinated against shingles, or herpes zoster, a condition often marked by debilitating chronic pain. Shingles is characterized by clusters of blisters that develop on one side of the body. These blisters can cause severe pain. About one in three older adults will develop shingles.
The virus that causes the common childhood disease chickenpox is called Varicella Zoster Virus. This virus infects more than 95 percent of people during their lifetime. After it runs its course, the virus becomes dormant within the nerves. Years or decades later, the virus may be reactivated and can cause shingles. The risk of shingles is greatest in the elderly and those who have compromised immune systems. To prevent the virus from reactivating, the CDC recommends a single dose of the vaccine Zostavax.