​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

 Content Editor

Pneumococcal conjugate 20 (PNEU-C20) vaccine

Learn about the PNEU-C20 vaccine, effectiveness, side effects, and safety.

Disease it protects from

The PNEU-C20 vaccine protects against 20 strains (types) of the bacteria Streptococcus pneumoniae that cause pneumococcal disease.

Who should get this vaccine

Getting this vaccine depends on your age, risk of serious disease, and whether you have already had pneumococcal vaccines.

Your healthcare provider may recommend you get this vaccine if:

  • You are age 65 years or older.
  • You are age 2 months to 64 years and have a high risk of serious pneumococcal disease because of certain health problems (see below).
  • You are an Indigenous person.
  • You live in a care facility, such as a continuing care home.
  • You smoke or vape.
  • You live in a home with poor indoor air quality, like if you use a wood-burning stove or live with someone who smokes inside the home.
  • You have an alcohol or substance use problem.
  • You experience homelessness.

Health problems that put you at high risk of serious pneumococcal disease include:

  • your spleen was removed or does not work well
  • heart, lung, liver, or kidney problems
  • chronic cerebral spinal fluid leak
  • you have had or are getting a cochlear implant
  • diabetes
  • human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
  • a weak immune system because of disease or medicine you take
  • sickle cell disease
  • you have had or will have a stem cell or solid organ transplant

If you are age 18 years or older and you have already had other pneumococcal vaccines, you may not need PNEU-C20 vaccine. Talk to your healthcare provider to find out if you have had all the doses of pneumococcal vaccines you need or if you can get this vaccine now or in the future.

Who should not get this vaccine

You may not be able to get this vaccine if:

  • You have an allergy to any part of the vaccine.
  • You had a severe (serious) or unusual side effect after this vaccine or one like it.

If you have allergies or have had a side effect to this vaccine, check with your doctor or a public health nurse before you get the vaccine.

Although you can get the vaccine if you have a mild illness, such as a cold or fever, you should stay home until you are feeling better to prevent spreading your illness to others.

Doses

If you can get this vaccine, the number of doses you need depends on your age.

Most people age 25 months or older need 1 dose.

Children age 24 months and younger need more than 1 dose depending on their age when they start this vaccine. Because of the high risk of serious pneumococcal disease in this age group, it is not recommended to delay this immunization.

If your child hasn't had all of their pneumococcal vaccine doses as part of their routine immunizations, the PNEU-C20 vaccine can be used to complete their series. If your child has completed their pneumococcal vaccine series using a different pneumococcal vaccine, they are recommended to get a dose of PNEU-C20.

Ask your healthcare provider how many doses your child needs.

Other vaccines that protect against the same diseases

Pneumococcal conjugate 15 vaccine (PNEU-C15) protects against 15 types of the bacteria Streptococcus pneumoniae that cause pneumococcal disease. It is part of Alberta's routine immunization schedule for children who do not have health problems that put them at high risk for serious pneumococcal disease.

Get the vaccine

You can get the vaccine at your local public health or community health centre. You may also be able to get it from your doctor or pharmacist.

PNEU-C20 and other vaccines

You can get a PNEU-C20 vaccine at the same time, any time before, or any time after most vaccines. However, certain vaccines have a waiting period. Check with your healthcare provider about when you can get the PNEU-C20 vaccine if:

  • You have already had other pneumococcal vaccines.
  • You have had any vaccines in the last 2 weeks.
Current as of: June 24, 2024
Author: Provincial Immunization Program, Alberta Health Services
Our work takes place on historical and contemporary Indigenous lands, including the territories of Treaty 6, Treaty 7 & Treaty 8 and the homeland of the Métis Nation of Alberta and 8 Métis Settlements. We also acknowledge the many Indigenous communities that have been forged in urban centres across Alberta.