Who Should and Who Should NOT get a Flu Vaccine
Who Should and Who Should NOT get a Flu Vaccine

In the unprecedented health context that France has been experiencing for several months, this new edition of the influenza vaccination campaign will, even more than in previous years, give priority to the vaccination of the most vulnerable people and caregivers.

For this vaccination campaign, the objective is to approach the 75% vaccination coverage as recommended by WHO among people targeted by the recommendations. Given the anticipation of increased demand for vaccines this year, the goal is to reach 30% of additional vaccine doses available, compared to the 12 million doses consumed during the previous 2019-2020 campaign, via continuous supply from pharmaceutical laboratories. The aim is to secure the supply of pharmacies throughout the vaccination campaign, which runs until the end of January 2021.
While the co-circulation of the influenza virus and the SARS-COV2 virus (Covid-19) is not excluded, the Ministry of Solidarity and Health, Public Health France, Health Insurance and the MSA underline the importance high influenza vaccination coverage in people at risk, associated with good compliance with barrier gestures of all.
The 2020-2021 influenza vaccination campaign will be supported by a large-scale communication mechanism in order to best support people at risk.

Each winter, 2 to 6 million people are affected by the influenza virus. Illness often manifested by symptoms such as high fever, cough, pain, intense fatigue … The flu can also be serious, especially in frail people who can develop pneumonia or see an already existing chronic disease worsen. During the 2019-2020 season, the surveillance carried out by Public Health France on severe forms of influenza showed that three-quarters of people admitted to intensive care for severe influenza were eligible for vaccination because they had one of the risk factors (age , chronic pathology, pregnancy, obesity). However, of these, less than a third had been vaccinated.
The vaccination coverage target against seasonal influenza defined by the World Health Organization is set at 75% for the populations targeted by the recommendations. The seasonal influenza vaccination strategy has been established in France according to the recommendations of the Haute Autorité de Santé (HAS). Last year, the vaccination coverage rate of the population targeted by these recommendations was only 47.8% [1]. It reached 52% for those over 65 but was only 30% for those under 65 at risk. It remains very insufficient among health professionals with great heterogeneity observed in particular in health establishments and nursing homes. Increasing vaccination coverage among frail people is, and therefore remains, a priority public health objective, particularly in times of health crisis.
This year, due to the context linked to the circulation of the Covid-19 virus, the Haute Autorité de Santé was seized and issued an opinion on May 20 [2] which confirms that the flu vaccination should take place. address as a priority to health professionals and the most fragile people, that is to say the people targeted by the vaccine recommendations against influenza, who are also at risk of serious infection with Covid-19:
people aged 65 and over;
people (adults and children) suffering from chronic pathologies (respiratory failure, heart failure, diabetes, renal failure, asthma, obstructive pulmonary disease, etc.);
obese people with a Body Mass Index equal to or greater than 40 kg / m2;
pregnant women ;
the entourage of infants under 6 months at risk of severe influenza and people with low immunity [3]
To protect these vulnerable people, the Ministry of Solidarity and Health is therefore calling this year to vaccinate vulnerable people as a priority at the start of the vaccination campaign and to hire people who do not present any particular risk, who would like to be vaccinated. , to postpone their vaccination until the beginning of December.
The adoption of all barrier gestures and compliance with the recommendations on wearing a mask to prevent Covid-19 also remain essential for the entire population because they also prevent the spread of the influenza virus. For those most at risk, the stake this year is to remind them that vaccination, combined with proper respect for barrier gestures, is the most effective way to protect themselves from the flu.
Finally, health professionals in contact with people at risk of severe influenza are also invited to be vaccinated. In fact, the vaccination of health professionals meets a double objective: to protect themselves so that they can continue to ensure their care activity; protect their patients, especially the most fragile. In the current context of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is also important to relieve the health care system, in particular in hospitals and medico-social establishments and services, and to protect healthcare professionals from the flu.