Date lodged: 18 October 2018
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S5F-02629 by Nicola Sturgeon on 27 September 2018 (Official Report, c.10), what evidence it has to support the First Minister's comment that "that the vaccine that is being offered to 65- to 74-year-olds this winter still provides full flu protection".
Answered by: Joe FitzPatrick 14 November 2018
Vaccination policy in Scotland, as with the rest of the UK, is based on recommendations from the JCVI. The JCVI is an independent, expert group which provides advice on all aspects of vaccination to the four UK health departments.
For the 2018-19 flu season, the JCVI recommended an adjuvanted trivalent (aTIV) flu vaccine for those aged 65 years and over. They agreed that the use of this vaccine should be a priority for people aged 75 and over as the evidence shows this group are the most at risk of the complications of flu. Those aged 65 to 74 years are offered trivalent flu vaccine which still provides protection against flu.
Evidence regarding the effectiveness of the influenza vaccine in those aged 65 years and older in the United Kingdom can be found in the Eurosurveillance report using the following link: