Flu Shot Protected 62% Of UK Seniors

Seqirus Fluad is an adjuvanted trivalent vaccine designed to protect seniors

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Public Health England (PHE) published its annual flu report which shows that the flu vaccine offered during the 2018-2019 flu season reduced the likelihood of visiting the physician because of flu by approximately 44 percent. 

Additionally, this PHE report published on May 30, 2019, says the adjuvanted vaccine, which was given to the majority of adults aged 65 and over, was estimated to have provided approximately 62 percent protection against this year’s Northern Hemisphere influenza strains. 

The adjuvanted trivalent influenza (aTIV) vaccine Fluad was licensed for use by the PHE for seniors in September 2017. 

Seqirus' Fluad is a standard-dose, three-component, inactivated flu vaccine, manufactured by Seqirus that contains an adjuvant. Fluad is manufactured using an egg-based process and is formulated with the adjuvant MF59. 

Overall, the end of season flu vaccine effectiveness against all influenza strains was reported by the PHE as follows: 

  • 44.3% (95% CI 26.8, 57.7) across all ages
  • 48.6% (95% CI -4.4, 74.7) for 2-17 year olds (LAIV only)
  • 44.2% (95% CI 21.3, 60.5) for 18-64 year olds
  • 49.9% (95% CI -13.7, 77.9) for those aged 65 and over (all vaccine)
  • 62% (95% CI 3.4, 85.0) for those aged 65 and over (aTIV only)

Dr. Richard Pebody, Head of Flu at PHE, said in a statement, “We’re pleased that the adjuvanted vaccine provided encouraging protection for seniors against the main circulating influenza virus strains this winter.” 

Annual flu shots are important for seniors with chronic conditions because people with respiratory diseases like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, emphysema or asthma are estimated to be 7 times more likely to die if they catch flu, says PHE. 

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Moreover, people with cardiovascular problems like chronic heart disease or angina, or have had a stroke, are 11 times more likely to die compared to those without underlying health problems.

Recent influenza news:

In the USA, Seqirus' Fluad is licensed only for persons aged 65 years and older.

However, it is not recommended for persons with a history of a severe allergic reaction to any of the ingredients in the vaccine in the past, including egg protein, or a severe reaction to a previous influenza vaccine.

Most pharmacies offer various flu vaccines. To help those without access to insurance programs, financial assistance programs can be found at Vaccine Discounts.

Relevant Links: CDC vaccination schedules, CDC vaccine price list, international travel alerts, and how to report vaccine side effects.