[Anti-flu prophylaxis in the opinion of primary care physicians and specialists].

  • R Graczykowski
  • Published 1999 in
    Polski merkuriusz lekarski : organ Polskiego…


Epidemics of influenza occurring each year in Poland in winter are a serious health problem and bring underestimated financial losses. Complications from influenza are the main threat to health and life of very young and very old people or those who are chronically ill. Economic consequences, especially those of health care and absenteeism at work and school, are underestimated. All of them may be made less intense by the influenza vaccinations. Unfortunately, this is the influenza vaccine that is the less often used for prophylactic purposes. It seems that the main cause is that most physicians and patients have little knowledge about the seriousness of the complications and the possibility of avoiding them by applying the vaccination. However, according to the unanimous opinion of experts, artificial immunisation is the most sufficient way of individual and mass protection against the catastrophic results connected with the disease and its complications. It should become a rule that each patient who is a member of high-risk group for complications of influenza, should be advised by his or her physician to take the vaccination every year to avoid the consequences of possible influenza. In order to obtain the maximum protection level, the members of high-risk group and the people who are in close contact with them should be the subjects of a vaccination schedule. The Advisory Committee on Immunisation Practices (ACIP) has appointed the groups of particular indications for influenza vaccination. The frequent reason of giving up the vaccination is a wrong conviction that the influenza vaccination may often cause complications or even influenza itself. In fact, serious complications after the vaccination, in modern terminology called Adverse Event Following Immunisation (AEFI), are extremely rare, and after the vaccination they are almost always connected with previously undistinguished allergy to the components of the vaccination, what makes a contraindication. Vaccination of members of the high-risk group each year before the influenza season in now the most sufficient way of the reduction of financial and health losses made by an epidemic of influenza. Primary-care physicians and specialists are to play a special role in prevention by advising their patients to be vaccinated and by organising mass vaccinations. The influenza vaccination should be one of the basic medical procedures in health care in case of the members of high-risk group. It should also become one of the services financed by social health insurance.

Cite this paper

@article{Graczykowski1999AntifluPI, title={[Anti-flu prophylaxis in the opinion of primary care physicians and specialists].}, author={R Graczykowski}, journal={Polski merkuriusz lekarski : organ Polskiego Towarzystwa Lekarskiego}, year={1999}, volume={7 39}, pages={143-7} }