Seasonal Flu: Is vaccination necessary and where to get it from?
Seasonal flu has been one of the recurring diseases to have affected people across all sections and age group. Popularly known as Influenza is a respiratory viral infection that can lead to complications like pneumonia and hospitalization as in Covid-19.
Influenza unlike other viral respiratory diseases can cause severe illness and other life-threatening complication in many people. Influenza occurs 20 -30 per cent in children and in five to ten per cent cases in adults.
Influenza is a public health concern and hence influenza vaccines are administered for protection. Since the flu causing virus change rapidly, the vaccines are developed twice a year. Flu vaccination decreases the severity of illness and reduces the risk of hospitalisation. The vaccination prevents the chances of spreading the vaccination to family members.
Different types of seasonal flu vaccines that are available
Injectable and intra-nasal vaccines are the two most common flu vaccines made by Serum Institute which is one of the manufacturers of flue vaccine. The intra-nasal vaccine, manufactured by SII is given as spray into the nostrils
The intra-nasal route of administration helps avoiding reactions and pain associated with the injections. The vaccine works by mimicking the virus attacks and offers unique advantage. The injectable flu vaccines on the other hand causes minor side effects like redness, soreness at injection site, nausea, mild headache and fever.
However flu vaccines are administered only at private hospitals and not at government health facilities Indian’s National technical advisory Group former member Dr Ajay Gambhir said. The flu vaccines are available with vaccine suppliers and are administered only on prescription on consulting doctor’s recommendation, India’s National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation’s former member Dr Ajay Gambhir informed Government employees may avail of the vaccine through the CGHS (Central Government Health Scheme),”
Can flu vaccine protect against Covid-19
The Covid-19 symptoms and seasonal flu symptoms are quite similar and is thought to prevent Covid to certain extent. According to SII, it reduces the stress of testing for overlapping of symptoms. flu vaccination doesn’t prevent Covid, it definitely will help in differentiation of Covid vs seasonal flu and help in identification of Covid cases.
Flu vaccines is available at Cloudnine hospital in metro cities including Chennai, Pune, Bengaluru, Chennai, New Delhi, Noida etc. It is also available at Apollo Clinic, Motherhood hospital , Manipal hospitals etc.
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