Don't forget your flu shot, Latvian health authority reminds

Influenza has started to spread in several European countries. Disease Prevention and Control Center (SPKC) on December 2 reminded the public to get the shot against the flu.

For the time being, no cases of influenza have been laboratory-confirmed in Latvia, but one clinically confirmed case of influenza in Rīga was reported last week.

State-paid flu shots may be received by:

  • medical practitioners;
  • people aged over 65;
  • adults and children suffering from chronic diseases (lung, cardiovascular, metabolic, renal, psychoneurological diseases, immunodeficiency, immunosuppressive patients, etc.);
  • employees and customers of social care centers;
  • children under 2 years of age;
  • pregnant women.

The SPKC recalled that it is not too late to get vaccinated in preparation for this year's flu season. 

Professor Dace Zavadska, Chair of the State Council of Immunization, said: “Since the previous two seasons of influenza were not with pronounced rates of disease, many people have been weakened by the immune memory of what is influenza and society as a whole could be more susceptible.[..] Also, if a person goes after the second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine or a booster dose, the influenza vaccine may be given at the same time as the dose of the Covid-19 vaccine."

The last flu season had a low prevalence associated with the established epidemiological security measures to limit the Covid-19 pandemic: distancing, wearing face masks, remote learning, and others, explained the SPKC, noting that this season, restrictive measures are being implemented on a significantly smaller scale, linked to a higher risk of influenza.

 

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