H1N1 Vaccine– FAQs and Information
H1n1 is a strain of the Influenza virus. It is also known as swine flu, and happened when people working in close contact with pigs and farm animals picked up the bug, and it mutated to become swine flu in humans. The symptoms presented by swine flu are the same as the regular flu like chills, sore throat, headache and a vague discomfort. By the time it was diagnosed and typed, it killed close to 17000 people in 2010. Governments and pharmaceutical companies scrambled to develop the H1n1 vaccine, and here is some information on the how, when and who should get the vaccine.
Does the H1n1 vaccine change from year to year?
Yes, slightly, as the H1n1 virus may mutate and for the years 2009 and 2010, it remained the same. If you are healthy, there is a very good chance you will not get it, but if you do, remain in isolation for 5 days and make sure to get the vaccine and you will never get it again.
H1N1 Vaccine: Who is it for?
Who should get the vaccine?
The CDC recommends that anyone at high risk of suffering complications, like pregnant women, children and the elderly, health care professionals, anyone with chronic health conditions between the ages of 25 to 65 should get the vaccine.
How many doses of the H1n1 vaccine are necessary?
Just one dose of the vaccine is adequate for anyone 10 years of age or older to protect against the virus. For children between the ages of 6 months and 9 years, two doses are recommended, and should be administered 4 weeks apart.
Is the vaccine safe to use?
No medications are 100% safe. People with egg allergies might avoid getting it altogether. The vaccine might cause allergies in some people and it is a good idea to stay vigilant for any unusual changes and see your physician immediately.
The H1n1 virus caused quite a scare worldwide and governments world over issued travel advisories and tried to contain a pandemic. There were major shortages of the vaccine for H1n1 , and manufacturers worked overtime to produce vaccines to protect people. Clinical trials showed that the vaccine worked quite well on most people with minimal side effects. Flu shots were available at the doctor’s office or at pharmacies. Many cities held clinics to make sure that people did not panic and got their shots in a timely manner.
The H1n1 vaccine was manufactured, using the same techniques as other flu vaccines, and licensed pharmaceutical companies tried to stay prepared to roll out enough medicines to prevent unnecessary suffering.