The Flu vaccine & who should get it

The vaccine is available every year to adults and children at risk of flu and its complications.

You need to get a new vaccine every Autumn. This is because the strains of the flu virus change. This is why it is called seasonal flu, but people commonly call it flu.

You should get your flu vaccine during the Autumn to be covered for flu season. For adults, the flu vaccine is given in your arm. Children receive the Fluenz Tetra vaccine through their nose as a nasal spray.  It takes two weeks for the vaccine to work and it should protect you for the flu season.

Who should get the flu vaccine?

Anyone over the age of 2 can receive a flu vaccine at your local Adrian Dunne Pharmacy. 

For certain ‘at-risk’ groups, the flu vaccine is highly recommended and FREE*.

The flu vaccine is FREE to those listed below:

  • aged 65 years and over
  • children aged 2-17 inclusive
  • healthcare workers
  • pregnant women, at any stage of pregnancy
  • residents of nursing homes and long stay institutions
  • have close, regular contact with pigs, poultry or water fowl

People with the following conditions can also get a free flu vaccine:

  • chronic heart (including acute coronary syndrome) or liver disease
  • chronic liver disease
  • chronic respiratory disease including COPD, cystic fibrosis, moderate or severe asthma, or bronchopulmonary dysplasia
  • chronic neurological disease including multiple sclerosis, hereditary and degenerative disorders of the central nervous system
  • diabetes mellitus
  • down syndrome
  • haemoglobinopathies
  • a body mass index (BMI) over 40
  • immunosuppressed due to disease or treatment including all cancer patients, asplenia or hyposplenism
  • children with moderate to severe neurodevelopmental disorder eg. cerebal palsy
  • children on long-term aspirin therapy
  • any condition that can compromise respiratory function eg. spinal cord injury, seizure or other neuromuscular disorder

Free flu vaccines are available to carers or householder contacts of people who have:

  • a health condition listed above
  • Down syndrome

*Eligibility criteria are subject to change by the HSE, ask in store for details.

 If you are not in one of these HSE at-risk groups listed above a private flu vaccination can be booked. These cost €30.

Who is the vaccine not suitable for?

  • Those with a history of severe allergic reactions to a previous dose of the vaccine or any of its ingredients.
  • Any one on certain combinations of medicines that affect the immune system.