Flu jabs halve mortality

Vaccinating the elderly against flu can almost halve the risk of death, research has suggested.

The findings follow claims by US experts last month that vaccinating the elderly against flu was pointless. A review article in The Lancet Infectious Diseases said there was little evidence that vaccinating the over-70s against flu reduced mortality rates (GP, 28 September).

US researchers pooled data collected from 18 cohort studies carried out between 1990-2000.

Each cohort provided data for more than 20,000 people aged 65 and over, accounting for 713,872 people in total. Of these, 415,249 were vaccinated against flu. Over the 10-year duration of the studies, 4,599 people were hospitalised for pneumonia or influenza and 8,796 deaths were recorded.

Influenza vaccination was found to reduce the risk of death by 48 per cent and cut the risk of hospitalisation for pneumonia or influenza by 27 per cent.

Comment below and tell us what you think

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins


Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

Boris Johnson, Sajid Javid and NHS chief executive Amanda Pritchard at Downing Street press conference

GPs offered £15 per jab as government sets 31 January COVID-19 booster deadline

COVID-19 vaccine payments to GP practices will rise nearly a fifth to £15 per jab...

Houses of parliament

Evidence for mandatory NHS staff COVID-19 jabs 'not good enough', says Lords committee

Evidence to support government plans to require all NHS staff in patient-facing roles...

Dr Farah Jameel

Practices 'need substantial support' to step up Omicron response, warns BMA GP chair

General practice is already facing unsustainable pressure and will need 'substantial...

JCVI COVID-19 immunisation chair Professor Wei Shen Lim

JCVI backs immediate expansion of COVID-19 vaccination to combat Omicron variant

The COVID-19 booster campaign should expand immediately to people aged 18-39 and...

Close up of hand holding sample tube with 'Omicron' handwritten on side

Government urged to 'free up' GP practices and expand steps to control Omicron

GPs have called for immediate action such as suspension of QOF to allow practices...

(Photo: Mike Kemp/Getty Images)

Coronavirus: Key guidance GPs need to know about COVID-19

GPonline provides an overview of the key guidance relating to coronavirus, including...