What’s in the flu shot?
What don’t I know about the flu shot?
- There is no live virus in the flu shot, so you cannot get the flu from the vaccine
- The composition of the vaccine changes every year
- All vaccines in Australia must pass stringent safety testing before being approved for use by the Therapeutic Goods Administration
- The influenza vaccine can be safely given during any stage of pregnancy. Pregnant women are at the increased risk of severe disease of complications from the influenza. Immunising against influenza during pregnancy not only protects the mother but provides ongoing protection to a newborn baby for the first six months after birth
I had the flu shot last year. Do I need to get it again this year?
What does the flu shot protect me from?
- The influenza vaccine prevents influenza infection but not other viruses like colds and gastroenteritis
- Influenza is a highly contagious disease that kills more Australians per year than road accidents. It is estimated that 1500-3500 die from influenza or influenza-related complications each year
- The flu vaccine can protect you against complications from existing underlying medical conditions that are brought about by contracting the flu
- Current research suggests that the flu shot seems almost halve the risk of heart attacks in middle-aged people
- Vaccination may also make your illness milder if you do get sick with the flu. No vaccine is 100% effective but it is still the single best prevention we have
- Getting vaccinated yourself also protects people around you, including those who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, like babies and young children, older people, and people with certain chronic health conditions