Combination vaccines take two or more vaccines that could be given individually and put them into one shot. Children get the same protection as they do from individual vaccines given separately—but with fewer shots. Thus they are one solution to the issue of increased number of injections during a single visit. Before a combination vaccine is launched in market, it goes through multiple steps of trial to ensure its effectiveness and safety. Among the traditional vaccines DPT and MMR were a standard for a long time. At present we have several combination vaccines like DPT combined with IPV/ Hep B/ Hib, MMR combined with varicella. The preservation of efficacy are continually supervised by trials as much combination vaccines are on the horizon.
Benefits of using Combination Vaccines:
The main benefit of combination vaccines is that they reduce the number of injections that a child receives. This addresses concerns that many people have about the number of vaccines being given and the discomfort associated with vaccine delivery.
Some of their advantages are:
Combination vaccines are a practical way to overcome the constraints of multiple injections.
Their use improves timely vaccination coverage, providing more compliance.
Combination vaccines may reduce the cost of transportation, storage and administering separate vaccines.
Combination vaccines may reduce the cost for extra health-care visits.
They may facilitate new vaccines additions into immunization programs.
Side effects associated with combination vaccines:
Side effects of combination vaccines are usually mild and they are similar to individual vaccines. As combination vaccines get more complicated, there are slightly more potential for administration error.
Overall combination vaccines are an effective means of decreasing the injections and simplifying the immunization schedule, thus providing overall benefits to infants, parents, healthcare providers, and managed care administrators.