Flu, vaccine from early October and free for children and over 60 – Chronicle


Rome, 5 June 2020 – Coronavirus and flu: the Ministry of Health is moving forward, and in view of the influence of next winter, it launches a campaign for anticipate flu shots and to increase them. The point is that this year we have to deal with the epidemiological situation for the circulation of SarsCov2, and it is necessary “facilitate differential diagnosis in the age groups at greatest risk of serious illness “.

So, early flu shots, “starting from the beginning of October“, establishes a circular from the ministry. In addition, it is necessary” to offer vaccination to the subjects eligible at any time of the flu season, even if they are late for vaccination. “Therefore, on the 2020-21 flu season, the ministry invites the Regions to launch “as soon as possible the tenders for the supply of vaccines”.

Flu vaccine, for those who are free

The flu vaccination for the next winter season is recommended for all children from 6 months to 6 years old and the elderly from 60 years of age. For these categories, in addition to those already provided, the vaccine will be free.

Beware of virus co-circulation

In the next flu season, we read in the ministerial circulate ‘Flu prevention and control: recommendations for the 2020-2021 season’, “co-circulation of influenza viruses and SarCov2 is not excluded. Therefore, it is necessary to reiterate the importance of flu vaccination, particularly in high risk individuals of all ages, to simplify the diagnosis and management of suspected cases, given the similar symptoms between Covid-19 and Influenza “.

“Vaccinating against the flu, moreover – underlines the ministry – complications from flu are reduced in subjects at risk and emergency room access“. Referring therefore to children – for whom flu vaccination is currently recommended in particular conditions or if suffering from particular pathologies – the circular notes that” given the current pandemic situation, there are no conditions for conducting a pilot study aimed at evaluating feasibility and efficacy in practice of influenza vaccination between 6 months and 6 years “. For this reason, the ministry refers to the bibliography currently available on community protection and effectiveness of influenza vaccination in children,” which shows – it is emphasized – the opportunity to recommend vaccination in this age group, also in order to reduce the circulation of the influenza virus between adults and the elderly in the current pandemic phase “.

Furthermore, “in order to facilitate the differential diagnosis in the age groups with the greatest risk of serious illness, the flu vaccination can be offered free of charge in the age group 60-64 years”, while at present the free admission was expected starting from 65 years.

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