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Captain James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center

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What is Shingles?

Almost one out of every three people in the United States will develop shingles, also known as zoster or herpes zoster, in their lifetime. There are an estimated 1 million cases of shingles each year in this country. Anyone who has recovered from chicken pox may develop shingles; even children can get shingles. However, the risk of shingles increases as you get older.

Who should get Shingrix?

Healthy adults 50 years and older should get two doses of Shingrix, separated by two to six months. You should get Shingrix even if, in the past, you:
  • had shingles
  • received Zostavax
  • are not sure if you had chicken pox
There is no maximum age for getting Shingrix.

If you had shingles in the past, you can get Shingrix to help prevent future occurences of the disease. There is no specific length of time you need to wait after having shingles before you can receive Shingrix, but generally you should make sure the shingles rash has gone away before getting vaccinated.

You can get Shingrix whether or not you remember having had chicken pox in the past. Studies show that more than 99 percent of Americans 40 years and older have had chicken pox, even if they don't remember having the disease. Chicken pox and shingles are related because they are caused by the same virus (varicella zoster virus). After a person recovers from chicken pox, the virus stays dormant (inactive) in the body. It can reactivate years later and cause shingles.

How can I get vaccinated at Lovell FHCC?

Veteran patients may receive their shingles vaccine (Shingrix) by appointment with their primary care provider at their Patient Aligned Care Team (PACT) clinic in North Chicago, Ill. Or they may make appointments at our Community Based Outpatient Clinics in Evanston or McHenry, Ill. or Kenosha, Wis. The vaccine is also available for veteran patients on a walk-in basis at the Immunizations Clinic at our North Chicago location,  Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 7:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. and 1-3:30 p.m.. Thursdays veterans may walk-in between 7:30 a.m. and 12 p.m.

Department of Defense Beneficiaries, Active Duty, and Military Retirees
DoD beneficiaries, active duty, and military retirees also may recieve the Shingrix vaccine on a walk-in basis at the Immunizations Clinic at our North Chicago location,  Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 7:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. and 1-3:30 p.m. Thursday walk-in hours are 7:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.