One of the most important health interventions people with pre-existing health complaints and over 65’s can do is get annual Flu vaccination. This comes out at the end of September every year and it comprises protection against the most common expected influenza strains each year.
The influenza vaccine comes in a few different formulations. In 2021 there were three different influenza vaccines available with one vaccine for those > 65 years, one for adults 18-64 (or children with chronic illness) and a nasal vaccine for children between the ages of 2 and 17. The adult vaccine is aimed at those with the following chronic conditions.
- chronic heart disease, including acute coronary syndrome
- chronic liver disease
- chronic kidney failure
- chronic respiratory disease, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cystic fibrosis, moderate or severe asthma, or bronchopulmonary dysplasia
- chronic neurological disease including multiple sclerosis, hereditary and degenerative disorders of the central nervous system
- Diabetes Mellitus
- Down syndrome
- morbid obesity, which means a body mass index (BMI) over 40
- immunosuppression due to disease or treatment (including asplenia or hyposplenism, and all cancer patients)
- children with a moderate to severe neurodevelopmental disorder such as cerebral palsy
- children on long-term aspirin therapy
- those with any condition that can compromise respiratory function, like spinal cord injury, seizure disorder or other neuromuscular disorder, especially those attending special schools or day centre
In the flu season 2021-22, influenza vaccines are free of charge for all children aged 2-17, all those over 50 years of age and those with a condition listed above Patients who are pregnant, work in heathcare or live in a nursing home or long-term care facility are also covered
Please click on the following link to find out more about the Influenza Vaccine