As individuals, vaccination is an important way of preventing development of disease in our bodies and stopping us from being ill from infections.
People who are vaccinated against a disease make it more difficult for the microbe causing the disease to find an unprotected person to infect.
When is flu vaccine available?
Generally, flu vaccines are available between September and mid-November that is typically before the late fall to early winter start of flu season.
Also, getting flu vaccines even later in the flu season may also protect you. After getting vaccination, it takes up to two weeks to build immunity.
Is it essential to get vaccination?
Annual flu protection is essential because the influenza virus changes from one year to another. Even though you got flu vaccine last year, it may not be designed to protect from the virus that exist in this flu season.
Viruses that cause influenza alter so quickly that they can turn into one season’s flu vaccine ineffective by the next year. Every year a committee conducted by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate which strains of influenza virus will be most rampant during the upcoming flu season.
Who should be vaccinated?
CDC recommended that everyone who wants to protect themselves from getting the flu can be vaccinated. Here are some recommendations to get flu vaccine:
- People along with the school aged children, who want to reduce the risk becoming ill with influenza virus or of transmitting influenza virus to others.
- All adults of age 50 years or more
- All children below the age of 19 years
- All infants between 6-59 months
- All pregnant women
- Children and adolescents who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy
- Children and adults who have metabolic, chronic pulmonary, hepatic, renal, hematological and cardiovascular disorders
- Children and adults who have any conditions such as: seizure disorders, spinal cord injuries, cognitive dysfunction, and other diseases that can compromise your respiratory system to function improperly or that can increase the risk of aspiration
- Health-care personnel
- People who are working in nursing homes and other chronic-care facilities
- People who have a weakened immune system either from some medications or HIV infection
- Child care workers or health care workers or live with or care for someone at high risk of complications from the flu