In this podcast, Dr. Tony Fiore discusses who should be vaccinated against seasonal flu during the 2009-2010 season. He explains who is at risk for severe illness from the flu and discusses the benefits of vaccination. Created: 9/2/2009 by National Center for Influenza and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD).
Date Released: 9/2/2009. Series Name: CDC Featured Podcasts.
[Announcer]This podcast is presented by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. CDC – safer, healthier people.
Welcome to this CDC influenza podcast. In this podcast, Dr. Tony Fiore from CDC's Influenza Division discusses vaccination recommendations for the 2009-2010 influenza season from CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP).
ACIP advises CDC on vaccine issues. Each summer, ACIP publishes guidance for the control and prevention of seasonal influenza for the upcoming influenza season. This podcast only discusses vaccination against seasonal or regular flu. For ACIP recommendations regarding vaccination for 2009 H1N1 flu, listen to the Podcast "2009 H1N1 ACIP Vaccination Recommendations" at www.cdc.gov/podcasts.
This year's seasonal flu vaccination efforts take place in the context of the emergence of a new H1N1 influenza virus that has caused the first influenza pandemic in more than 40 years. There are many uncertainties associated with this new virus and the upcoming U.S. flu season, but experts predict that both the new H1N1 virus and the usual seasonal influenza viruses will be causing illness this season. For this reason, CDC continues to recommend seasonal influenza vaccination. In fact, vaccination against seasonal influenza may be especially important to lessen overall illness and the associated burden on health care services this season.
So, who should get a seasonal flu vaccine? First of all, anyone who wants to reduce their risk of becoming ill with influenza or of transmitting it to others can get vaccinated. But vaccination is especially important for people at higher risk of getting influenza and those who are at higher risk for serious flu complications or their close contacts, so CDC recommends that these people get an annual flu vaccination. This includes:
• All children and adolescents from six months until their nineteenth birthday;
• All persons 50 or older;
• All people older than six months of age with a chronic medical condition that places them at high risk for influenza-related complications, such as asthma, diabetes, or a weakened immune system;
• All persons who live with or care for persons at higher risk for influenza-related complications;
• Healthcare workers;
• Adults who live with a young child or a person with a chronic medical condition; and
• Pregnant women and their families.
Almost 90 percent of the U.S. population is included in one or more of these groups. Children younger than six months old cannot receive influenza vaccination. To protect them, their household and their close contacts, such as child care providers, should be vaccinated.
It is very important that children younger than nine years old, who are getting vaccinated for the first time, receive two doses of vaccine, given at least four weeks apart to get full protection.
The risks for severe illness from influenza virus infection are increased among both young children and pregnant women. Vaccination has been demonstrated to reduce the risk for severe influenza illness and medical complications. Seasonal influenza vaccines are available in many places already. Vaccination can begin as soon as vaccine is available.