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  Reply # 1330564 24-Jun-2015 12:01
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sidefx: Yes.. that's kind of why I don't understand the craze for flu shots. Most recommendations I've come across seem to say it's more recommended for the old\infirm and those in certain jobs. My doctor has always said the same when I've asked him if it's worth getting.

I can not believe this. I've had the flu and it sucked. I don't want to get it again so I get vaccinated against it. If I got the flu again I probably wouldn't die, but I might wish I did (hyperbole!). Even though the risk is small, if you can take a shot to increase your chance of avoiding it, why not?

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  Reply # 1330672 24-Jun-2015 13:23
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bazzer:
I can not believe this. I've had the flu and it sucked. I don't want to get it again so I get vaccinated against it. If I got the flu again I probably wouldn't die, but I might wish I did (hyperbole!). Even though the risk is small, if you can take a shot to increase your chance of avoiding it, why not?


Noting that the shots we're given only protect against a few specific strains of influenza. Better than nothing of course!

 

 

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1330711 24-Jun-2015 13:48
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wsnz:
bazzer:
I can not believe this. I've had the flu and it sucked. I don't want to get it again so I get vaccinated against it. If I got the flu again I probably wouldn't die, but I might wish I did (hyperbole!). Even though the risk is small, if you can take a shot to increase your chance of avoiding it, why not?


Noting that the shots we're given only protect against a few specific strains of influenza. Better than nothing of course!
 


Not well understood though is how we (humanity) have avoided a repeat (or far worse) of the 1918/19 pandemic.
Despite an explosion in global travel and a trebling of world population, subsequent pandemics have been much less severe.  (Have still killed millions though)
So perhaps inevitable repeated pandemic exposure to different  (less virulent)  strains (and including vaccination) imparts some degree of resistance to novel strains,  as the alternative - that we've just been lucky - seems improbable to me.


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  Reply # 1330742 24-Jun-2015 14:37
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How many of those getting sick

a) have children

b) use public transport

c) work in an office





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  Reply # 1330744 24-Jun-2015 14:40
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bazzer:
sidefx: Yes.. that's kind of why I don't understand the craze for flu shots. Most recommendations I've come across seem to say it's more recommended for the old\infirm and those in certain jobs. My doctor has always said the same when I've asked him if it's worth getting.

I can not believe this. I've had the flu and it sucked. I don't want to get it again so I get vaccinated against it. If I got the flu again I probably wouldn't die, but I might wish I did (hyperbole!). Even though the risk is small, if you can take a shot to increase your chance of avoiding it, why not?


I was in the doctor's waiting room a few weeks ago and a lady of about 65 ish came in who I know by sight as she works in a local shop.

She was asked by the receptionist if she wanted the flu jab as she was eligible for a free one.

"Oh no thanks - I never get the flu."

Hmm. Hope no one says "Would you like a Yellow Fever vaccination?" if she heads for Africa.

"Oh no thanks - I never get Yellow Fever."





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  Reply # 1330785 24-Jun-2015 15:54
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itxtme: Data I was referring to Data sources: Ministry of Health Mortality Collection, ESR Weekly Virology Reports.  Please note this would be a very low indicator on death.  As many more deaths will not be tested for influenza, thus they will never be reported as the cause of death.  Internationally the respected standard is around 0.1% so that equates to 4000 New Zealanders.  


0.1% of those who contract it, or of the total population? "Mortality rates"  seems to refer to either... If the former then you're assuming every New Zealander will catch the 'flu every year?  Also as you mention, studies have shown that a very high percentage of deaths are within those over 65 (86% according to this: http://www.otago.ac.nz/news/news/otago083052.html) or due to other complications.

Regardless of all the statistics... Both my doctor and the WHO only recommend flu shots for:

 

     

  • pregnant women at any stage of pregnancy
  • children aged 6 months to 5 years
  • elderly individuals (≥65 years of age)
  • individuals with chronic medical conditions
  • health-care workers.
So I'm happy to skip it until such time as I fall into one of those categories.

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  Reply # 1330807 24-Jun-2015 16:26
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sidefx:
itxtme: Data I was referring to Data sources: Ministry of Health Mortality Collection, ESR Weekly Virology Reports.  Please note this would be a very low indicator on death.  As many more deaths will not be tested for influenza, thus they will never be reported as the cause of death.  Internationally the respected standard is around 0.1% so that equates to 4000 New Zealanders.  


0.1% of those who contract it, or of the total population? "Mortality rates"  seems to refer to either... If the former then you're assuming every New Zealander will catch the 'flu every year?  Also as you mention, studies have shown that a very high percentage of deaths are within those over 65 (86% according to this: http://www.otago.ac.nz/news/news/otago083052.html) or due to other complications.

Regardless of all the statistics... Both my doctor and the WHO only recommend flu shots for:

 

     

  • pregnant women at any stage of pregnancy
  • children aged 6 months to 5 years
  • elderly individuals (≥65 years of age)
  • individuals with chronic medical conditions
  • health-care workers.
So I'm happy to skip it until such time as I fall into one of those categories.

Pretty sure that is just their "highest priority" and "priority" recommendations. I wouldn't think it's an exhaustive list.

The website states: "Vaccination is the most effective way to prevent infection and severe outcomes caused by influenza viruses. Vaccination is especially important for people at higher risk [my emphasis] of serious influenza complications, and for people who live with or care for high risk individuals."

That doesn't mean it's not important for other groups. Firstly, you have a higher risk of getting the flu. Secondly, you have a higher risk of infecting someone else (especially one of these priority groups or someone that can't get vaccinated).

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  Reply # 1330819 24-Jun-2015 16:31
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Thanks for the advice.  I think I'll defer to my GPs advice over someone random from the internet. Feel free to be as outraged as you like. If you feel strongly about it perhaps you should lobby to make them mandatory - like other vaccines that are required I'd have no issue getting it then. *shrug*

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  Reply # 1330825 24-Jun-2015 16:38
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sidefx: Thanks for the advice.  I think I'll defer to my GPs advice over someone random from the internet. Feel free to be as outraged as you like. If you feel strongly about it perhaps you should lobby to make them mandatory - like other vaccines that are required I'd have no issue getting it then. *shrug*

No outrage here. Just surprised that your GP would tell you not to bother. It is, of course, your choice. I don't think there are any vaccines that are mandatory, are there?

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  Reply # 1330846 24-Jun-2015 16:46
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bazzer: 
I don't think there are any vaccines that are mandatory, are there?


Sorry you're right, I mean added to the "immunisation schedule" rather than "mandatory" as such. 

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  Reply # 1330878 24-Jun-2015 17:42
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2012 was the last time I had flu like symptoms - took 5 days off work, the first time I had taken more than 1 day off since I started working.
Do not ever wish to repeat that

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  Reply # 1330902 24-Jun-2015 18:01
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sidefx: 
0.1% of those who contract it.


Yeah sorry you are right, I shouldnt be trusted with a calculator :D

None the less you should definatley name your doctor, as would love to chat with him/her about his suggestion that vaccination isnt necessary.  Not sure the GP council would be overly impressed by that.  WHO most certainly wouldnt suggest you shouldnt get it, they may suggest whos should receive it as a higher priority (our free vaccine program).

Its interesting debating such issues with people, and I am most definatley not outraged, just struggle to understand those who dont want to take an evidence based approach to medicine..  It makes one wonder just how fully informed you actually are?



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  Reply # 1330919 24-Jun-2015 18:24
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itxtme:
sidefx: 
0.1% of those who contract it.


None the less you should definatley name your doctor, as would love to chat with him/her about his suggestion that vaccination isnt necessary.  Not sure the GP council would be overly impressed by that.  WHO most certainly wouldnt suggest you shouldnt get it, they may suggest whos should receive it as a higher priority (our free vaccine program).



Not sure if you intended to, but that comes across a little like you're twisting my words. My doctor didn't blanket suggest "vaccination isnt necessary" or that I "shouldn't get it" - he suggested that the recommendations to get it are more targeted at older patients or patients with other complications. Not so much a young, relatively fit\healthy person. So his response was to me asking "Is it worth getting the flu shot?" and his response was more "For a young, fit, healthy person, not so much"



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  Reply # 1330950 24-Jun-2015 20:19
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sidefx:
itxtme:
sidefx: 
0.1% of those who contract it.


None the less you should definatley name your doctor, as would love to chat with him/her about his suggestion that vaccination isnt necessary.  Not sure the GP council would be overly impressed by that.  WHO most certainly wouldnt suggest you shouldnt get it, they may suggest whos should receive it as a higher priority (our free vaccine program).



Not sure if you intended to, but that comes across a little like you're twisting my words. My doctor didn't blanket suggest "vaccination isnt necessary" or that I "shouldn't get it" - he suggested that the recommendations to get it are more targeted at older patients or patients with other complications. Not so much a young, relatively fit\healthy person. So his response was to me asking "Is it worth getting the flu shot?" and his response was more "For a young, fit, healthy person, not so much"




It's insurance. You don't need it until you need it...





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  Reply # 1330968 24-Jun-2015 20:48
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Geektastic: 
It's insurance. You don't need it until you need it...


I'm playing devils advocate now, but I for one am thankful most insurance companies pay out more often when you need it as it seems the same can't be said about flu vaccines:

http://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/vaccination/effectiveness-studies.htm 

19%  estimated effectiveness for 2014-2015, ouch. 




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