Influenza vaccination recommendations include specific population groups at increased risk for severe disease and/or complications
The Hellenic Pulmonology Society gives advice on this year’s flu vaccination, considers it the best vaccination period in Greece it is the last half of November and emphasizes that all vaccinations without exception must be recommended and prescribed by the attending physicians.
– The recommendations flu vaccination include specific population groups at increased risk for severe disease and/or complications, such as people aged 60 years and older, children 6 months and older and adults with chronic systemic diseases and immunosuppression, pregnant women, people with morbid obesity, healthcare personnel, closed populations such as : camps, penitentiaries, people in contact with birds or pigs, as well as carers of high-risk people.
– In total, 6 different quadrivalent vaccines will be released, 2 of which are reinforced and addressed exclusively to people 60 years of age and older. The EPE emphasizes that the effectiveness of simple vaccines remains excellent, while that of enhanced vaccines seems to excel only in people over 65, although scientific evidence for this is relatively weak. We agree with the National Immunization Committee, which recommends their use in people over 65 and especially in people 75 and over. Therefore the population should not take vaccination with a conventional vaccine as inferior. The best vaccination period in Greece is the last half of November since the flu epidemic usually starts after December 15th.
The Hellenic Pulmonology Society considers that everyone without exception vaccinations must be recommended and prescribed by attending physicians. The reasons are primarily scientific, since the attending physician is the only one competent to judge not only which type of vaccine a person needs but also when the vaccination should be done, after examining the patient and thoroughly assessing all possible factors that affect the effectiveness of the vaccine. .x. concomitant infection, medication, possible immunodeficiency, time interval since previous vaccination, etc. In addition, health care providers can assess the particular juncture for respiratory infections in the near future by prioritizing influenza vaccination of individuals in high-risk groups and scheduling all necessary immunizations. “The number of vaccines, although sufficient, is not unlimited, and uncontrolled vaccination carries the risk of leaving uncovered patients who really need it. Last year, the tactic of vaccinating in pharmacies, without a prescription, ultimately did not lead to increased vaccination coverage,” he notes.
Last year’s decision, reports EPE, for the possibility of anti-flu vaccination without prior prescription, was made because after the end of the pandemic, an outbreak of viruses and a change in the seasonality of the flu was observed worldwide and in our country, with flu incidents even in the summer of 2022. “There is no corresponding reason this year, so we recommend that citizens plan their vaccinations in time in collaboration with their treating physician, who knows their history and is informed about the epidemiological data.”
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