Seasonal Flu Vaccine
Seasonal flu is a term used for the yearly flu viruses that occur, usually during late fall and winter.
Who needs a seasonal flu vaccine?
Anyone who wants to reduce their chances of getting the flu can get a vaccine. This year, the vaccine is recommended for everyone ages 6 months and older.
People who should especially receive the flu vaccine, because they may be at higher risk for complications or negative consequences include:
- Children age 6 months through 59 months
- Pregnant womenomen who are or will be pregnant during the influenza season
- Persons 50 years of age or older
- Persons with extreme obesity (Body Mass Index of 40 or greater)
- Persons aged six months and older with chronic health problems
- Residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities
- Household contacts (including children) and caregivers of children aged 59 months and younger (i.e., aged <five years, particularly contacts of children aged <six months) and adults aged 50 years and older
- Household contacts and caregivers or people who live with a person at high-risk for complications from the flu
- Health care workers, including physicians, nurses, and other workers in inpatient and outpatient-care settings, medical emergency-response workers (e.g., paramedics and emergency medical technicians), employees of nursing home and long-term care facilities who have contact with patients or residents, and students in these professions who will have contact with patients.
Some high-dose flu vaccine is available as an option for individuals age 65 years and older. A higher dose of antigen in the vaccine is designed to create a stronger immune response and provide better protection against the flu. However, the CDC has not expressed a preference for high dose vaccine, so Kentuckians 65 and older are urged to receive the regular dose vaccine if the high dose vaccine is unavailable.
When should you get the seasonal flu vaccine?
Seasonal flu vaccine will be available as early as September in many communities this year. Please arrange to receive the vaccine as soon as it arrives at your health care provider, local health department or pharmacy.
While no shortage is expected at this time, the Department for Public Health encourages people to receive their vaccination as soon as possible.