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H1N1 Swine Flu Update - Latest Definitions Of High Risk Groups

Updated on November 28, 2009

The precise definition of what constitutes a high risk group does vary from nation to nation. The general standard for the availability of H1N1 priority vaccination is generally limited to these high risk groups.

#1 Individuals from the age group of 5 years up to 65 years of age who are suffering from medical illnesses of a chronic nature such as blood disorders, epilepsy, thyroid disease, diabetes, bowel disease, cancer, cardiac disease, and hypertension as well as various respiratory conditions which are considered chronic including chronic bronchitis, cystic fibroses, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

#2 People under 65 years of age who have respiratory function which can be determined that it can be compromised due to a neurological, physical, or muscular disorder such as multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, ALS known as Lou Gehrig's disease, spina bifida and paraplegia / quadriplegia.

#3 Any patients who are currently in the process of receiving chemo dialysis without any age restriction.

#4 Women who are pregnant.

#5 Children from 6 months old up to and including 10 years old.

#6 the parents or other providers of primary care of children who are under 6 months of age and of any individuals who are immune compromised up to 24 years of age.

#7 Patients who are currently actively undergoing cancer treatments either by radiation therapy or chemo therapy.

#8 Patients on a pre-transplant waiting list.

#9 Patients who are post transplant.

#10 Patients in hospitals under 65 years of age who have one or more medical conditions that can be termed chronic.

There has been considerable controversy swirling around the actual dosing of H1N1 influenza vaccine especially in nations that they are offering both adjuvanted and unadjuvanted vaccine formulations.

The general agreement at the current time is that various age groups should be administered different vaccine levels according to their ages.

  • From age 0 to 5 months H1N1 vaccine is never recommended of any kind whether or not it is adjuvented or unadjuvented.
  • From between 6 months and 3 years of age a half dose of adjuvanted vaccine should be administered; then a minimum wait time of 21 days be observed; and then another half dose of adjuvanted vaccine should be given.
  • For healthy children aged between 3 years to 9 years of age a single half dose of adjuvanted vaccine is recommended.
  • In children from 3 years to 9 years of age who are currently suffering from medical conditions that can be termed chronic then there should be two half doses of adjuvanted vaccine administered also separated 21 days apart.
  • For healthy individuals aged 10 years to 64 years of age, the recommended level is one dose of either unadjuvanted or adjuvanted vaccine.
  • For individuals of the same age group age 10 to 64 years who are suffering from medical conditions that can be termed chronic, one dose of adjuvanted vaccine is recommended.
  • For individuals who are 65 years of age and over then a single dose of adjuvanted vaccine is the medical recommendation at this time.
  • For pregnant women, they should be administered a single dose of unadjuvanted vaccine.

If the pregnant woman is more than a total of 20 weeks along in her pregnancy, then if the vaccine which is unadjuvanted is not currently available in that community or the localized rates of H1N1 Mexican Swine Flu influenza are at a greater rate in that community than the national average, then within those situations should be administered one dose of the adjuvanted vaccine. Pregnant women who have chronic and severe diseases should also be offered one dose of adjuvanted vaccine.

H1N1 is continuing to act unpredictably and it would benefit all individuals to keep a close eye on this swiftly changing pandemic.

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