What are pneumococci?

Pneumococci are bacteria and can be the cause of middle ear infection, pneumonia, blood poisoning and meningitis. In many individuals, pneumococci are part of the normal flora of the upper respiratory tract and do not cause disease. Some individuals are at risk of developing severe pneumococcal infections. These include especially young children, immunocompromised individuals or people suffering from certain chronic diseases.


When and how often should I be vaccinated against pneumococcal disease?

In Switzerland, the pneumococcal vaccine is part of the standard vaccination schedule and is recommended during the first 5 years of life. There is no recommendation for healthy adults to be vaccinated since the risk of severe disease is small. For adults with certain risk factors (e.g. immunodeficiency, certain chronic diseases), a single vaccination is recommended.

92 CHF per dose

plus consultation and injection fee

What else should I know about the pneumococcal vaccine?

  • In Switzerland, there are 2 approved vaccines against pneumococci: Pneumovax-23 (PPV23) and Prevenar (PCV13). PPV23 was used in the past but is rarely used today. While PPV23 covers 23 different types of pneumococci, protection is lower - due to the lack of  T-cell response - compared to PCV13. Additionally, PCV13 allows for a reduction in the number of pneumococci in the normal flora of the upper respiratory tract, which is why Prevenar is the preferred vaccine used today.

  • For more information on pneumococcal disease and vaccination, please visit the website of the FOPH.

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