Quadrivalent Influenza Vaccine | 季節性流感疫苗（四價流感疫苗）
Flu season soon starts in Hong Kong, and with the COVID-19 pandemic still raging on, it’s time to also be prepared for seasonal influenza by getting a flu vaccine.
Dr. Johnny C.Y. Lam, the family medicine specialist at The Central Clinic, offers some insights on why it’s important to get a flu shot in the middle of the COVID-19 outbreak.
The influenza viruses and SARS-CoV-2 virus are different. Why should we get a flu vaccine during the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak?
We anticipate that one type of virus can cause more serious disease in a patient already infected with the other, such as having further damages to his/her lungs in a co-infection.
Also, there’s concern that with the increase of flu patients during the autumn and winter, the hospitals may become overwhelmed when there is an outbreak in both influenza and COVID-19.
What are the similarities and differences between the symptoms of the flu and COVID-19?
COVID-19 and flu patients can have similar symptoms of varying degrees, ranging from asymptomatic to severe symptoms or death. Some examples of common symptoms the 2 share are:
– sore throat
– runny or stuffy nose
– shortness of breath
COVID-19 causes more serious illnesses in some people, such as the elderly and people with chronic diseases. COVID-19 patients also may experience a change or loss of taste or smell.
Why should we get a flu shot every year?
Our immune systems produce antibodies in response to each influenza vaccine, but the antibodies decrease over time. In addition, the influenza virus strains change from time to time. With different strains circulating each season, it’s important to equip our immune system with antibodies against the latest strains.
Do you know? Our clinic provides subsidised vaccination to Hong Kong residents under the following criteria:
- Pregnant women
- People aged 50 or above this year
- Children between the age of 6 months and under 12 years
- Children aged 12 years or above but studying at primary schools in Hong Kong on vaccination day
- Persons with intellectual disability
- Recipients of Disability Allowance / standard rate of “100% disabled” or “requiring constant attendance” under CSSA
Please call us at 3180 9888 to enquire and make an appointment.