CDC Frequently Asked Questions about 2018-2019 Influenza Season

PUBLISHED: Oct 5, 2018
Relevant to: All Healthcare Organizations

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has published a list of Frequently Asked Questions about the 2018-2019 Influenza season including the following valuable information for vaccine providers:

  • Flu vaccines have been updated to better match circulating viruses [the B/Victoria component was changed and the influenza A(H3N2) component was updated].
  • For the 2018-2019 season, the nasal spray flu vaccine (live attenuated influenza vaccine or “LAIV”) is again a recommended option for influenza vaccination of persons for whom it is otherwise appropriate. The nasal spray is approved for use in non-pregnant individuals, 2 years through 49 years of age. There is a precaution against the use of LAIV for people with certain underlying medical conditions. All LAIV will be quadrivalent (four-component).
  • Most regular-dose egg-based flu shots will be quadrivalent.
  • All recombinant vaccine will be quadrivalent. (No trivalent recombinant vaccine will be available this season.)
  • Cell-grown flu vaccine will be quadrivalent. For this vaccine, the influenza A(H3N2) and both influenza B reference viruses will be cell-derived, and the influenza A(H1N1) will be egg-derived. All these reference viruses will be grown in cells to produce the components of Flucelvax.
  • No intradermal flu vaccine will be available.
  • The age recommendation for “Fluarix Quadrivalent” was changed from 3 years old and older to 6 months and older after the annual recommendations were published last season to be consistent with Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved labeling.
  • The age recommendation for Afluria Quadrivalent was changed from 18 years old and older to 5 years old and older after the annual recommendations were published last season to be consistent with Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved labeling.
  • For the 2018-2019 flu season, providers may choose to administer any licensed, age-appropriate flu vaccine (IIV, RIV4, or LAIV4). Here is a table showing all flu vaccines that are FDA-approved for use in the United States during the 2018-2019 season.

Follow the link below to access the FAQs.

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