Flu jab 'may prevent children developing swine flu immunity'

Seasonal flu vaccination may prevent children developing immunity to swine flu, an opinion piece in The Lancet Infectious Diseases has suggested.

Preventing seasonal flu far outweighs any theoretical risk of immunity to pandemic strains
Preventing seasonal flu far outweighs any theoretical risk of immunity to pandemic strains

Dr Guus Rimmelzwaan and colleagues from Erasmus Medical Centre in the Netherlands suggest that vaccinating children against seasonal flu may mean they do not develop natural cross-immunity to related pandemic strains.

But the suggestion was rejected in an accompanying comment article. Preventing children from catching seasonal flu far outweighs any theoretical risk of immunity to pandemic strains not developing, Terho Heikkinen and Ville Peltola from Turku University Hospital, Finland, said.

Public health decisions should be based on the best clinical evidence available, they argued.

‘There is ample evidence for the great burden of influenza in young children, and this burden appears during every influenza season,' they said.

‘By contrast, there is no clinical evidence that vaccinating children against influenza would prevent the induction of heterosubtypic immunity and thereby be disadvantageous to children in the long run.'

 

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

£20 notes spread out

VAT trap for PCNs could strip millions of pounds from general practice

Tens of millions of pounds could be stripped from general practice because work carried...

Talking General Practice logo

Podcast: Is the BMA representing GPs effectively, why GPs face a pension tax hit, and views on the workload crisis

In our regular news review the team discusses representation of GPs, a new survey...

Man sleeping

NICE guidance on insomnia backs app to replace sleeping pills

Hundreds of thousands of people with insomnia could be offered treatment via a mobile...

Health worker prepares a dose of COVID-19 vaccine

JCVI backs autumn COVID-19 booster campaign for high-risk adults and NHS staff

Frontline health and social care staff and adults at increased risk of severe illness...

GP consultation

Government accused of 'misleading' claims on general practice workforce

GP leaders have accused the government of making misleading claims about the general...

Consulting room door

LMC calls for enhanced access to be scrapped after abuse forces practice to close reception

A Midlands LMC has backed a practice forced to close its reception desk after abuse...