More News About the Flu Vaccine
More shots at school: Don't be surprised if your child's school asks for your permission to immunize. In 2009, three of the four states with the highest children's H1N1 vaccination rates -- Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Vermont -- had school-based vaccination programs. School clinics save doctors' offices from having to coordinate thousands of vaccines, and help reach children who otherwise wouldn't be vaccinated and protected.
Tougher Tamiflu guidelines: No matter how much you may beg may beg your doctor, physicians have been advised not to administer children an antiviral medication just to make sure they are healthy for your Disney vacation next week. Overuse of the drug could cause flu viruses to become resistant to the medication. The CDC dictates that top priority for Tamiflu prescriptions will go to sick children under age 2 (down from age 5 at the beginning of the 2009 flu season), pregnant women, adults over 65, those with a medical condition that puts them at risk, parents with an infant under 6 months old, and anyone who's hospitalized with the flu. If you think your child may need an antiviral, visit your doctor within 48 hours of the virus' inception -- that's when Tamiflu is most effective. FYI: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns the "generic" Tamiflu sold by unscrupulous online drugstores is unauthentic -- call or visit your doctor for medication needs.
Originally published in the November 2010 issue of Parents magazine. Reviewed and updated in December 2011.
All content on this Web site, including medical opinion and any other health-related information, is for informational purposes only and should not be considered to be a specific diagnosis or treatment plan for any individual situation. Use of this site and the information contained herein does not create a doctor-patient relationship. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.