Influenza: the recommended vaccine for pregnant women

Pregnant, should you be vaccinated against the flu? Is it safe? Dr. Floret, a member of the Technical Committee on Immunizations, reminds us why this is important and comes back to us on some received ideas.

Why is it important for pregnant women to be vaccinated against influenza?

  • Dr. Floret: A pregnant woman who gets the flu exposes herself to specific risks, including pulmonary complications, which could lead to hospitalization. By being vaccinated, it limits these risks. On the other hand, this vaccination protects the baby during the first six months of his life, which is not negligible.

Many pregnant women are afraid to get vaccinated. Is this vaccine safe?

  • Dr. Floret: Of course. There are many more benefits than risks to getting vaccinated. This fear dates from the H1N1 epidemic but at the time many pregnant women were vaccinated and everything went well. This injection is very well tolerated.

When is the right time to get vaccinated?

  • Dr. Floret: The ideal is to do it before each flu epidemic, but it is also possible at the very beginning. The vaccine is valid about 10 days after the injection. To get vaccinated, simply visit your GP to give you a free vaccination voucher. As a person at risk, he will be supported 100%.

If I get vaccinated this year, will I be protected for next year?

  • Dr. Floret: Unfortunately no. The protection of this vaccine does not exceed one year. Even if next year's virus does not mutate, it will have to be redone if you want to be protected.

Does the pregnant woman's entourage need to be vaccinated too?

  • Dr. Floret: Not necessarily. From the moment a pregnant woman is vaccinated, she is protected. After, everyone is free to get this vaccine at the pharmacy ... But in France, the vaccine strategy against influenza is not to eradicate the virus but to protect the most vulnerable.

Is vaccination against influenza recommended for children?

  • Dr. Floret: Vaccination against influenza is possible from 6 months but it is recommended only for children at risk, for example those who suffer from respiratory problems. Again, the vaccine strategy against influenza is not to vaccinate everyone, only the most fragile.

Stéphanie Letellier

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