It is time for flu vaccines again! Flu season is around the corner and it is almost time to get your child’s annual flu vaccine. As we start getting shipments in, we will send out an email letting people know that they can call to schedule a shot appointment. You may also check our website for updates. The CDC, AAP and providers of PAR recommend that all children 6 months and older get immunized against the flu. Because the flu strains change each year, it is necessary to get a flu vaccine every year to protect against the strains of the flu for the current year. Below are a few reminders about the flu vaccine.
- The flu shot is approved for all individuals 6 months and older.
- Flumist (nose spray flu vaccine) is approved for individuals 2 years and older without a history of wheezing/asthma.
- Flumist is a live attenuated virus vaccine and should not be given to those who have (or who live with someone who has) a severely weakened immune system. Additionally, it should not be given within 4 weeks of other live attenuated vaccines such as MMR and Varicella (chicken pox). It may be given the same day as these, however.
- In concordance with the views of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) and American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) we do not recommend one flu vaccine over another. The most recent data on the two flu vaccine options show essentially identical effectiveness.
- If it is your child’s first year getting the flu vaccine, (s)he will need 2 doses of the flu vaccine at least 4 weeks apart.
- If your child has only received one dose of flu vaccine in his or her life and is 8 years old or younger, (s)he will need 2 doses of the flu vaccine 4 weeks apart as well.
- Children with an egg allergy, even if anaphylactic, may now get the flu vaccine.
- For those children under 6 months of age or those who cannot receive a flu vaccine due to a medical condition or an allergy, it is recommended that the families and caregivers of those children are vaccinated for the current season so as to best protect the child.
In this brief video, Dr. Conley and Dr. Sullivan, our “flu-gurus” explain the flu and why the vaccine is important.
For more information about flu vaccine timing read here.
To read about flu vaccine myths click here.