Flu vaccine available, please make bookings for a discount price
Influenza vaccine is the only vaccine reformulated each year to optimise the match between vaccine and circulating virus strains. The WHO issues recommendations for the different strains of influenza viruses (type A and type B) which are included in the vaccine based on the prevailing strains in the northern and southern hemispheres. Once the recommendation is made, vaccine producers require at least 6 months to manufacture and distribute the vaccine
The quadrivalent flu vaccine is designed to protect against four different flu viruses; two influenza A viruses and two influenza B viruses.
For years, flu vaccines were designed to protect against three different flu viruses (trivalent). This included an influenza A H1N1 virus, an influenza A H3N2 virus and one B virus. Experts had to choose one B virus, even though there are two very different lineages of B viruses that both circulate during most seasons. This meant the vaccine did not protect against the group of B viruses not included in the vaccine. Adding another B virus to the vaccine aims to give broader protection against circulating flu viruses.
Who shouldn’t get the quadrivalent flu vaccine?
• Egg allergy.
• Children younger than 6 months are too young to get a flu shot.
• People with severe, life-threatening allergies to flu vaccine or any ingredient in the vaccine. This might include gelatine, antibiotics, or other ingredients.
People who should talk to their doctor before getting the flu shot:
• If you have an allergy to eggs or any of the ingredients in the vaccine. Talk to your doctor about your allergy..
• If you ever had Guillain-Barre Syndrome (a severe paralysing illness, also called GBS). Some people with a history of GBS should not get this vaccine. Talk to your doctor about your GBS history.
• If you are not feeling well. Talk to your doctor about your symptoms.
Special Consideration Regarding Egg Allergy
• People who have ever had a severe allergic reaction to eggs can get recombinant flu vaccine if they are 18 years and older or they should get the regular flu shot (IIV) given by a medical doctor with experience in management of severe allergic conditions. People who have had a mild reaction to egg—that is, one which only involved hives—may get a flu shot with additional safety measures. Recombinant flu vaccines also are an option for people if they are 18 years and older and they do not have any contraindications to that vaccine. Make sure your doctor or health care professional knows about any allergic reactions. Most, but not all, types of flu vaccine contain a small amount of egg.
• All persons aged 6 months and older are recommended for annual vaccination, with rare exception.
People at High Risk for Developing Flu-Related Complications
• Children younger than 5, but especially children younger than 2 years old
• Adults 65 years of age and older
• Pregnant women (and women up to two weeks post partum)
• Residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities
• Also, Aboriginals and Torres Islanders seem to be at higher risk of flu complications
People who have medical conditions including:
• Neurological and neurodevelopmental conditions [including disorders of the brain, spinal cord, peripheral nerve, and muscle such as cerebral palsy, epilepsy (seizure disorders), stroke, intellectual disability (mental retardation), moderate to severe developmental delay, muscular dystrophy, or spinal cord injury].
• Chronic lung disease (such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease [COPD] and cystic fibrosis)
• Heart disease (such as congenital heart disease, congestive heart failure and coronary artery disease)
• Blood disorders (such as sickle cell disease)
• Endocrine disorders (such as diabetes mellitus)
• Kidney disorders
• Liver disorders
• Metabolic disorders (such as inherited metabolic disorders and mitochondrial disorders)
• Weakened immune system due to disease or medication (such as people with HIV or AIDS, or cancer, or those on chronic steroids)
• People younger than 19 years of age who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy
• People who are morbidly obese (Calculate your Body Mass Index or BMI, to check if 40 or greater)
Note: There is no recommendation for pregnant women or people with pre-existing medical conditions to seek special permission or secure written consent from their doctor for influenza vaccination if they get vaccinated at a worksite clinic, pharmacy or other location outside of their physician’s office.
Quadri flu vaccine will be available in the first week of April 2016. For a limited time it will be sold for $10 for new and existing patients. After the promotion period the price will go up to $20. Please check our website/facebook page for more information on the availability and booking requirement closer to the date. Don’t be left out from this loyalty offer.
Author: Dr Nisreen Dahalan