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Flu vaccines for children:

It's time to think about 'flu vaccines for children, with four being approved by the TGA this year.
By Motherpedia
Date: March 22 2013
Editor Rating:

With autumn beginning to be felt in most parts of the country, it’s time to think about influenza vaccines for children.

Australia’s peak medical research organisation, the National Health and Medical Research Council, recommends annual vaccination for anyone six months of age or older who wants to reduce their chances of becoming ill with the ‘flu.

Annual ‘flu vaccination is strongly recommended for anyone 6 months of age or older with a medical condition that places them at higher risk of sever illness from ‘flu. Even children without an underlying medical condition, who become infected with ‘flu, can develop a serious illness. According to Health Department advice, the majority of childhood ‘flu-related hospitalisations occur among children without an underlying medical condition.

Influenza vaccines change from year-to-year as new strains of influenza virus appear which is why it’s important to be vaccinated each year.

The Therapeutic Goods Administration has advised that for the 2013 season, there are four different influenza vaccines registered for use in children from the age of 6 months.

  • Agrippal
  • Fluarix
  • Influvac
  • Vaxigrip

There is one further vaccine approved for use in children from the age of 5 years:

  • Fluvax (bioCSL)

Fluvax is not approved by the TGA for use in children under the age of 5 years, and should be used only after consideration of potential benefits and risks for children aged between 5 and 9 years.

You should talk to a GP about whether it’s recommended for your child – or anyone else in your family - to have an influenza vaccine. The vaccine is free to some population groups including children with chronic medical conditions. For others, the cost is variable but is generally between $15 to $25.

To find an available GP appointment near you, visit 1st available

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