In these days when the entire world’s people are struggling with coronavirus, the outbreak of seasonal flu has doubled the problem for the public. Since influenza has symptoms like those of coronavirus, it may cause concerns for the patient and, most importantly, weaken immune system. Accordingly, prevention of influenza and injection of influenza vaccine is one of the key issues concerning the prevention of infection with Covid-19 virus.
What is certain is the high demand for influenza vaccine from the public in these particular circumstances. In this situation, it is thus necessary to classify the population in need of being vaccinated against influenza. Based on the international recommendations and decisions of the National Scientific Committee on Influenza, receiving and injecting influenza vaccine is categorized into two groups A and B.
. Meanwhile, medical and dental staff, including orthodontists and their colleagues, are in Group A receiving influenza vaccine due to their direct contact with patients and carriers.
Free Human Seasonal Influenza Vaccine
Receiving and injecting a free influenza vaccine is defined for Group A, for those including hospital staff and employees. Moreover, medical and dental students in the wards at the beginning of influenza season will be included in the free seasonal human influenza vaccine group. Hence, hospital dentists are included in this group. Other people in the free influenza group are:
- For up to two weeks after pregnancy, pregnant women are a very high priority and are included in this group.
- The staff of non-governmental, charitable, and private hospitals
- All the health system personnel stationed in border health care centers and pre-hospital emergencies (115)
- Health personnel stationed in offices with coordination and introduction letter from the relevant organization
- Environmental Protection Agency personnel related to birds and Veterinary Organization personnel
- Employees of the security and law enforcement departments with the permission and order of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of IRI
- Patients with AIDS, immunodeficiency, and weakness, in coordination with the University of Medical Sciences; in such a case, patients with malignancy with or without chemotherapy or radiotherapy, dialysis transplant recipients, thalassemia major, anemia, tuberculosis, and hemophilia are prioritized.
- Disabled veterans and altruist groups
The second group for receiving influenza vaccine and dentistry
The second group to get the influenza vaccine includes people with underlying and chronic diseases who can get this vaccine from pharmacies at their request. Private dental offices and clinics are recommended to provide seasonal human influenza vaccines to improve the health of dentists and dental staff. In this case, influenza transmission through the treatment staff and those referring to private dentistry will be largely prevented.
In the second group receiving influenza vaccine, the following order can be prioritized:
- Cardiovascular and respiratory patients with asthma
- Patients with kidney, liver, neurological, hematological, endocrine, and metabolic disorders
- Patients with neurological and mental disorders
- Age group 6 to 18 years being treated with aspirin
- Patients with obesity with a body mass index (BMI) above 40
- Travelers intended to travel to foreign countries, two weeks before the trip
Do not to dos of influenza vaccine and dentistry
In case the medical and dental staff or any of the people in the first or second group have an allergic history, they should be careful about getting the influenza vaccine. People with severe allergic reactions like anaphylaxis should never get influenza vaccine.
Patients and dentists severely allergic to eggs should be careful to injecting influenza vaccine by performing the necessary tests in a well-equipped clinic. In addition, they must stay monitored in the clinic or hospital for half an hour after the vaccine is given. After the vaccine, this group should remain sitting or lying on their backs for up to 15 minutes.
Patients with a history of Guillain-Barre for six weeks after receiving the previous influenza vaccine and patients with acute or severe illness with or without fever; vaccination in these patients is delayed until the patient’s general condition improves.
In addition, patients with symptoms of corona disease should not be vaccinated against influenza until they have fully recovered.
Flu vaccines and dentistry FAQ
1-Is influenza vaccine forbidden for breastfeeding women?
No. Inactivated influenza vaccine is not forbidden for pregnant or even lactating women. Moreover, pregnant women are the priority of getting it.
2-Is there any problem with getting the influenza vaccine while taking antiviral drugs?
Influenza vaccine used in Iran is of inactive type; thus, its use with antiviral drugs is not prohibited. Besides, if the patient uses other vaccines, nothing is wrong with injecting this vaccine.
3-What are the storage conditions of influenza vaccine?
The vaccine should not be frozen and you should discard the vaccine if this happens. Store the influenza vaccine in the middle part of the refrigerator at 2 to 8 ° C.
4-What are the conditions for getting the influenza vaccine?
Influenza vaccine should be injected at a center equipped with a cardiopulmonary resuscitation device. Moreover, the contents of the vaccine should be injected with a disposable syringe. Make sure that the needle head air should not be completely drained and be careful not to spill the contents of the vaccine. This way, the prescribed dose is injected into the candidate.
5-What is the dose of influenza vaccine for children?
The dose recommended for children 6 months to 9 years of age is 0.5 ml. It is intramuscularly injected and it is best to be injected into the deltoid muscle (the outer anterior surface of the thigh) of the baby.