- They may have previously contracted the flu virus and know how debilitating and unpleasant it can be to suffer from the flu. These patients chose vaccination In order to avoid experiencing this illness again.
- They fall into the ‘at risk’ groups and wish to avoid complications in their health that influenza can bring on.
- They have a work responsibility, family member or care for someone who would suffer if the virus was passed to them.
The Influenza vaccination at LloydsPharmacy is free for some patients or may cost €15 – €20 depending on your eligibility. The vaccine only takes 15 minutes to deliver and is suitable for anyone over the age of 18 pending approval from your local LloydsPharmacy pharmacist who will assess your suitability.
This year’s seasonal flu vaccine contains the 3 most prevalent strains of flu viruses as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO).
Influenza is not a recent development in our history. The name “influenza” originated in 15th century Italy, from an epidemic attributed to the “influence of the stars”. The pandemic of “Spanish” influenza in 1918 caused an estimated 21 million deaths worldwide.
Influenza is an acute illness of the respiratory tract. It affects all age groups and is characterised by the abrupt onset of fever, headache, muscle pain, cough, sore throat and malaise. Influenza viruses spread in tiny droplets caused by coughing and sneezing. They usually spread from person to person. Sometimes, however, people become infected by touching something that was recently contaminated with the virus and then touching their mouth or nose. Most adults may be able to infect others beginning one day before they show symptoms and up to five days after becoming sick. It lasts from three to five days and can be followed by fatigue for two or three weeks.
Minor changes in the virus are seen from season to season which is why the vaccine composition changes each year and why vaccination each year is recommended.
The seasonal influenza vaccine is recommended for:
- Persons aged 65 and over.
- Those with a long-term medical condition such as diabetes, heart or lung disease.
- People whose immune system is impaired due to disease or treatment.
- Persons with a Body Mass Index (BMI) over 40.
- Pregnant women (can be given at any stage of pregnancy) Residents of nursing homes and other long stay institution.
- Healthcare workers Carers.
- People with regular close contact with poultry, water fowl or pigs.
It takes two weeks to develop immunity to the influenza virus parts present in the vaccine. Serious side effects of the flu vaccine are uncommon. Side effects of the injection vaccine include soreness at the site of the injection, muscle aching, fever, and feeling unwell. Paracetamol can be taken to reduce any of these mild side effects although you can consult the pharmacist for advice on any issues you may encounter.
The following is a list of the Lloydspharmacy stores providing the vaccination service this year. Where possible please book your vaccination ahead of time by phone or calling into your chosen store.