Influenza, also known as the flu, is a disease that can be really serious, causing hospitalisation and sometimes death. With so much information in the media on COVID-19 and its related vaccines, we need to remember that getting your influenza vaccine annually is still incredibly important.
Every year the World Health Organization estimates the number of flu cases globally sits at a billion People, 3-5 million of those are serious, and there are 290000 – 650000 influenza-related respiratory deaths.
Getting your flu vaccine every year reduces your risk of contracting influenza illnesses.
Why should I get the influenza vaccine?
While some people who are vaccinated may still contract the flu, studies have shown that the flu vaccine reduces the effects of the disease. Vaccination is your protection against flu illnesses, hospitalisation and sadly, in some cases, even death.
What sort of illnesses can the flu cause?
Contracting influenza looks different for different people. It could mean a few days of not feeling well and maybe missing some work, or it can look much more serious. Flu complications can include ear infections, sinus infections and bacterial pneumonia. The flu can also be very serious for those with chronic medical conditions such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes, causing them to worsen.
How do flu vaccines work?
Influenza vaccines cause antibodies to develop in your body, usually around two weeks after the vaccine has been given. Antibodies are your immune system’s way of protecting you against infection when influenza viruses are circulating.
What sort of flu vaccine is used by SmartClinics?
SmartClinics uses flu vaccines that protect against four different flu viruses: an influenza A(H1N1) virus, an influenza A(H3N2) virus, and two influenza B viruses. The vaccine is normally given in the upper arm in patients 6 months and older to protect against influenza. None of the ingredients in the vaccine can cause flu.
If I get the flu vaccine can I get the COVID-19 vaccine?
The influenza vaccine can be given on the same day as COVID-19 vaccines.
Studies show that getting both vaccines on the same day produces a good immune response and is safe.
Where can I get my influenza vaccine?
You can get the flu vaccine at a SmartClinics near you. For more information go here.