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Every winter, hospitals face a large increase in emergency respiratory admissions in elderly people. A case-control study was undertaken to assess the effect of routine influenza vaccine in preventing such admissions among a cohort of UK elderly presenting with acute respiratory illness during winter 2003-2004. 157 hospitalised cases and 639 controls (matched for age, sex and week of consultation) were interviewed. In a winter typical of levels of circulating influenza in recent years, influenza vaccine did not show a protective effect on emergency respiratory admissions overall (adjusted OR 1.2 (95%CI 0.8, 1.9). Policy makers should not rely solely on influenza vaccine routinely having a large effect on winter pressures, and should focus on additional preventive strategies.

Original publication

DOI

10.1016/j.vaccine.2007.09.005

Type

Journal article

Journal

Vaccine

Publication Date

14/11/2007

Volume

25

Pages

7909 - 7913

Keywords

Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Cohort Studies, Female, Health Policy, Humans, Influenza A Virus, H3N2 Subtype, Influenza Vaccines, Influenza, Human, Male, Retrospective Studies, United Kingdom, Vaccination