Will influenza vaccination boost Covid recall campaign?

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The government hopes to make use of the seasonal flu vaccination campaign to boost the Covid-19 campaign.

Vaccination – kill two birds with one stone. The government intends to take advantage of the annual flu vaccination campaign to breathe new life into life against Covid-19. From Friday, part of the French can be vaccinated free of charge against seasonal flu.

People over 65, pregnant women, and people with certain diseases (asthma, diabetes, AIDS, etc.) are eligible. At-risk audiences that echo those targeted by the anti-Covid recall campaign. “The same people are at risk of contracting Covid and severe influenza,” Jerome Salomon, director general of health, said Thursday at a press conference.

The Minister of Health, Olivier Veran, warned Friday on BFMTV that “the flu may be strong this year,” noting that “10 million doses” were available on the first day of the campaign, 20% more than last year. A flu vaccination campaign has also been introduced. It was originally scheduled for October 26.

Even the government’s head of vaccine strategy, Alan Fisher, spoke of the “risk of a severe epidemic,” This Friday morning on RTL“Seasonal flu can also kill,” he said. “Il fait froid dehors, c’est plus humide, comme tous les virus respiratoires”, le Covid-19 “circule plus, on s’y attendait”, a égallement précisé Olivier Véran, confirmant le petit rebond automnal de l’épidémie constaté These last days.

Breathing new life into the summoning campaign

Influenza and bronchiolitis or gastroenteritis, these seasonal epidemics, once again have slowed dramatically in the past year due to the successive confinement and barrier measures imposed by the coronavirus crisis. But if “the flu virus has spread very little, it hasn’t gone away,” Jerome Salomon summed up Thursday. The other side of the coin is that the immunity of the population has decreased.

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So it is possible – and even encouraged – to receive his third dose of both a Covid and a flu shot at the same time: one injection per arm.

This opportunity to take a booster dose should further enhance the vaccination against the coronavirus. Olivier Veran explained this morning that “it is necessary to promote the booster vaccination of the elderly and the frail” in order to avoid “recognition of situations such as those that occurred last year”.

Since the booster campaign began in France on 1 September, about two million people have received a third dose. Olivier Veran commented: If the pace is accelerating and approaching 100,000 third injections per day, “it is not enough.”

Avoid epidemic immersion

In France, influenza epidemics generally spread between November and April. In a press release published on October 20, public health FranceHe notes that “published data do show early circulation of bronchiolitis virus and active circulation of influenza virus in Mayotte”.

The interview took place in France information On October 19, Pascal Crepi, a professor and researcher in epidemiology at the Ecole Hautes Etudes Sainte-Public in Rennes, explained that one should be wary of “the double or triple epidemiological effect of both Covid-19 as well as influenza or bronchiolitis”. Such a situation would “stigmatize” our health system.

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See also on HuffPost: 50 million vaccinated: the illustrated race that shows French progress

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