Over 130,000 people receive free seasonal flu vaccine in Qatar

  • 2 months   ago
Over 130,000 people receive free seasonal flu vaccine in Qatar

The Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) announced that since the launch of the seasonal influenza campaign in mid-October, more than 130,000 people have received their free seasonal flu vaccine, more than twice as many people have been vaccinated compared to the same period last year.

The free vaccine is available at all Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) clinics, Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) outpatient clinics (for patients with existing appointments) and designated private and semi-private clinics and hospitals across Qatar.

"The demand we have seen so far this year for the flu vaccine is unprecedented. Throughout November between 3,500 to 4,000 people a day have been requesting and receiving their free flu vaccination across the healthcare system more than twice as many as November 2019. It is clear that people have understood the extra importance of protecting themselves and their families amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic," said Dr. Abdullatif Al Khal, Chair of the National Health Strategic Group on COVID-19 and Head of the Infectious Diseases Division at HMC.

"Seasonal influenza and COVID-19 are two different viruses and the flu vaccine will not prevent people getting COVID-19, but the same people who are at the highest risk of severe symptoms from COVID-19, such as the elderly and those with chronic conditions, are also at greatest risk from the flu. Therefore, it is more important than ever that people receive their flu vaccination this year," added Dr. Al Khal.

 

This years seasonal influenza campaign is a joint initiative of the Ministry of Public Health, PHCC and HMC and includes the support of the private and semi-private clinics and hospitals across Qatar.

Manager of Health Protection and Communicable Diseases Department at MOPH Dr. Hamad Al Romaihi explained: "With all primary health centers and more than 50 private medical centers providing the flu vaccine free of charge, its never been easier to get vaccinated against the seasonal flu".

"The high demand for the flu vaccine so far this year is very encouraging, but I urge people who have not yet received their vaccine to do so as soon as possible, as the vaccine can take around two weeks for the antibodies to develop and provide protection," added Dr. Al Romaihi.

More information including where to get the flu vaccine in Qatar and FAQs about the flu and COVID-19 can be found on the campaign website.

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