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Influenza vaccination begins for risk groups

Published : 27 Oct 2020, 00:06

Updated : 27 Oct 2020, 10:19

  DF Report

Press Release Photo by THL.

Some municipalities have already started offering influenza vaccines to risk groups, but the majority will start vaccination at the beginning of November.

The influenza vaccine will be free for those for whom influenza is an essential health risk or who receive significant health benefits from the vaccination, said the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) in a press release on Monday.

Those aged 65 and over, children aged between six months and six years, and pregnant women are in the risk groups. The family and friends of people at high risk of severe influenza, men starting their military service, and women starting their voluntary military service, social and healthcare and pharmaceutical services personnel, and persons who live or spend a lot of time in institutional conditions, such as reception centres and prisons will be offered the vaccine, too.

Influenza is a serious illness that can cause dangerous secondary diseases, such as pneumonia. The vaccine is safe and provides the best protection against influenza. The vaccination is crucial during the coronavirus pandemic.

“Having influenza and COVID-19 at the same time is a bad combination for anyone but especially for the risk groups. That is why it is especially important to get vaccinated against influenza this year. The vaccine prevents the spread of influenza and protects your health and your family and friends,” said THL Chief Physician Hanna Nohynek.

Influenza season has not yet started in Finland. No laboratory-confirmed case of influenza has been reported to THL’s National Infectious Diseases Register since July. This year, influenza has been less active in both the northern and the southern hemisphere compared to previous years.