It’s never been easier to comply with OSHA’s requirements for workplace Hepatitis B vaccinations. A Medasend nurse will come to your office and perform the vaccination(s) – it’s that simple. Learn more about the Hepatitis B vaccines below, with information courtesy of the CDC.
Hepatitis B is a contagious liver disease that ranges in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a serious, lifelong illness. It results from infection with the Hepatitis B virus. Hepatitis B can be either “acute” or “chronic.”
Is the Hepatitis B vaccine recommended before international travel?
The risk for Hepatitis B virus infection in international travelers is generally low, although people traveling to certain countries are at risk. Travelers to regions with moderate or high rates of Hepatitis B should get the Hepatitis B vaccine.
How is the Hepatitis B vaccine series given?
The Hepatitis B vaccine is usually given as a series of 3 or 4 shots over a 6-month period.
Is the Hepatitis B vaccine series effective?
Yes, the Hepatitis B vaccine is very effective at preventing Hepatitis B virus infection. After receiving all three doses, Hepatitis B vaccine provides greater than 90% protection to infants, children, and adults immunized before being exposed to the virus.
Is the Hepatitis B vaccine safe?
Yes, the Hepatitis B vaccine is safe. Soreness at the injection site is the most common side effect reported. As with any medicine, there are very small risks that a serious problem could occur after getting the vaccine. However, the potential risks associated with Hepatitis B are much greater than the risks the vaccine poses. Since the vaccine became available in 1982, more than 100 million people have received Hepatitis B vaccine in the United States and no serious side effects have been reported.
Is it harmful to have an extra dose of Hepatitis B vaccine or to repeat the entire Hepatitis B vaccine series?
No, getting extra doses of Hepatitis B vaccine is not harmful.
What should be done if Hepatitis B vaccine series was not completed?
Talk to your health professional to resume the vaccine series as soon as possible. The series does not need to be restarted.
Who should not receive the Hepatitis B vaccine?
The Hepatitis B vaccine is not recommended for people who have had serious allergic reactions to a prior dose of Hepatitis B vaccine or to any part of the vaccine. Also, it not recommended for anyone who is allergic to yeast because yeast is used when making the vaccine. Tell your doctor if you have any severe allergies.
Are booster doses of Hepatitis B vaccine necessary?
It depends. A “booster” dose of Hepatitis B vaccine is a dose that increases or extends the effectiveness of the vaccine. Booster doses are recommended only for hemodialysis patients and can be considered for other people with a weakened immune system. Booster doses are not recommended for persons with normal immune status who have been fully vaccinated.
Is there a vaccine that will protect me from both Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B?
Yes, there is a combination vaccine that protects people from both Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B. The combined Hepatitis A and B vaccine is usually given as three separate doses over a 6-month period.
Can I get the Hepatitis B vaccine at the same time as other vaccines?
Yes. Getting two different vaccines at the same time has not been shown to be harmful.
Where can I get the Hepatitis B vaccine?
Talk to your doctor or health professional or call your health department. Some clinics offer free or low-cost vaccines.
What is Hepatitis B immune globulin (HBIG)?
Hepatitis B immune globulin is a substance made from human blood samples that contains antibodies against the Hepatitis B virus. It is given as a shot and can provide short-term protection (approximately 3 months) against Hepatitis B.