Pregnant women, those with underlying medical conditions and the over 65′s were advised strongly yesterday to avail of the HSE’s seasonal Flu vaccine this year.
Among the ‘at risk’ group were children, particularly those in school or after school groups, adults with long term chronic illnesses eg asthma or Cardiac problems, Carers and Healthcare Staff.
Healthy pregnant women and those up to 6 weeks after giving birth who have not received the Swine Flu vaccination are among those advised to get the vaccine as they are at higher risk of complications from Swine Flu.
The HSE says ‘the flu virus changes every year and this is why a new flu vaccine has to be given annually.
Based on advice from the World Health Organisation (WHO) this year the seasonal flu vaccine contains 3 common flu virus strains, including the pandemic H1N1 – Swine Flu strain which is still circulating and is expected to be the most common strain this year.
Unlike last year, the Swine Flu vaccine is now included in the Seasonal Flu vaccine meaning only one Flu Vaccination is required this year.
This year’s Flu Vaccine can be given at any stage of pregnancy.