Study shows influenza vaccines offer moderate protection during flu season
Every flu season, scientists determine how effective the flu vaccine has been. This is meant to determine the value of the vaccine as a health intervention. Various factors, like age and health of each person and the similarity of the flu vaccine with the flu virus, are important to consider when seeing how effectively an influenza vaccine is.
"Few studies have assessed how quickly protection against influenza declines within a year following vaccination, specifically among U.S. populations," Naval Health Research Center in San Diego, California, Dr. Jennifer Radin said.
Now researchers can work to develop more accurate influenza vaccines in the future.
"Previous studies have found that protection from contracting influenza declines over time following influenza vaccination due to decreasing antibody levels," Radin said, "However, we found during this study that those who received the vaccine had moderate, sustained protection up to 6 months post-vaccination, the duration of most influenza seasons. This means flu vaccination reduced one's risk of a doctor's visit by approximately 50-70 percent."
The study was part of a presentation at the 2015 International Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases.