Flu Vaccine Guideline for Children

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As medical experts recommend flu vaccines for adults, the American Academy of Pediatrics has changed its guidelines and recommend all children over six months get a flu shot.

The flu vaccines had been recommended for kids with chronic illnesses, but now pediatricians say many of the hospitalizations and deaths from the flu are among children, and they're trying to make sure kids have a good shot at a healthier season.

"Kids nine years of age and younger need two flu shots in the first year, 30 days apart. After that, it's a shot every year. The reason for that is these viruses are very smart and the influenza virus can shift and change itself each year," Dr. Autumn Clos, Sparrow Pediatric Pulmonologist.

The flu shot is highly recommended for children with asthma, but those who are allergic to eggs should first see an allergist, as the vaccine is made in egg embryos.

Flu Immunization Clinics for the Public

  • Saturday, Oct. 12
    9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    Clinton Memorial Hospital Community Health Fair
    Resa Bldg. On US 27 in St. Johns

  • Saturday, Oct. 26
    9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    Carson City Community Health Expo
    Carson City High School

  • Saturday, Nov. 2
    9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
    Meridian Mall
    Know Your Numbers Health Fair

Flu Immunizations for Healthy Patients, Families, Anyone in Surrounding Community

  • Thursday, Nov. 7
    Sparrow Hospital
    2?4 p.m.
    Cost: $15, Health Department will bill Medicare, Medicaid, PHP?patients must have insurance card

  • Wednesday, Nov. 13
    Sparrow Professional Building
    11:30?1:30 p.m.
    Cost: $15, Health Department will bill Medicare, Medicaid, PHP?patients must have insurance card

wilx.com: Extended Web Coverage

Influenza Vaccine

  • Much of the illness and death caused by influenza can be prevented by annual influenza vaccination.

  • Influenza vaccine is specifically recommended for people who are at high risk for developing serious complications as a result of influenza infection.

  • These high-risk groups are:
    • All people age 65 and older.
    • People of any age with chronic diseases of the heart, lungs or kidneys, diabetes, immunosuppression, or severe forms of anemia.
    • Residents of nursing homes and other chronic-care facilities housing patients of any age.
    • Women who will be more then three months pregnant during influenza season.
    • Children and teenagers who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy and who may therefore be at risk for developing Reye syndrome after an influenza virus infection.

  • Overall vaccine effectiveness varies from year to year, depending upon the degree of similarity between the influenza virus strains included in the vaccine and the strain or strains that circulate during the influenza season.

  • Influenza vaccine produced in the United States cannot cause influenza.

  • The only type of influenza vaccine that has been licensed in the United States is made from killed influenza viruses, which cannot cause infection.

When to receive the influenza vaccine

  • In the United States, influenza usually occurs from about November until April, with activity peaking between late December and early March.

  • The optimal time for vaccination of persons at high risk for influenza-related medical complications is during October through November.

  • It takes about 1 to 2 weeks after vaccination for antibody against influenza to develop and provide protection.

Source: http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/diseases/flu/fluvac.htm ( The Center for Disease Control Vaccine Information Web site)