DoD policy states influenza immunizations are mandatory for all Active Duty, National Guard, and Reserve personnel. Influenza immunizations are mandatory for DoD civilian and contract health care personnel who provide direct patient care at military treatment facilities (MTFs).
Note: more information on DoD influenza policies can be found at www.vaccines.mil/Policies/Influenza_-_Seasonal.
The Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs (HA) Policy 08-005, dated 4 April 2008, mandates all civilian health care personnel who provide direct care to patients in medical treatment facilities must be immunized against seasonal influenza each year as a condition of employment.
ACIP recommends the use of the seasonal influenza vaccinations for all people 6 months and older. Additionally, emphasis on providing routine annual vaccinations to certain groups at higher risk for influenza infection or complications should be a priority:
Vaccine shipments occur in early August. Your installation seasonal influenza vaccine program should begin immediately upon receipt of influenza vaccine to protect individuals at risk from developing influenza or its complications. All Services will follow Service-specific implementation guidelines. Influenza vaccinations should continue until supply is exhausted or the vaccine expiration is reached.
It is important to document immunizations properly into electronic immunization and paper-based systems. Vaccine, date of administration, lot number, manufacturer, Vaccine Information Statement version date, name of vaccine administrator and medical exemptions for military personnel must be documented in Service-specific immunization tracking systems.
All Services will monitor implementation using Service-specific electronic immunization tracking systems (Medical Protection System (MEDPROS), Aeromedical Services Information Management System (ASIMS), Medical Readiness Reporting System (MRRS), Shipboard Automated Medical System (SAMS), and the Defense Eligibility Enrollment Reporting System (DEERS). All Military Health System (MHS) beneficiary immunizations should be documented in the electronic health record.
DoD has arranged with the Defense Logistics Agency – Troop Support (DLA-TS) to contract for influenza vaccine from four different manufacturers. Three manufacturers will provide injectable quadrivalent inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV4), Sanofi-Pasteur (Fluzone®), CSL Biotherapies (Afluria®), and GlaxoSmithKline (Fluarix® and FluLaval®). MedImmune (FluMist®) produces the intranasal quadrivalent live, attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV4).
Note: More information regarding this year's influenza vaccines and the presentations available can be found at:
If you are having a medical emergency call 911. Contact your healthcare provider or the clinic at which you received your vaccination for appropriate follow-up.
You may also contact the the DoD 24/7 Vaccine Healthcare Centers Network at (877) 438-8222 or email via at https://askVHC.wramc.amedd.army.mil. Any clinically significant medical event that occurs after vaccination should be submitted to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) at www.vaers.hhs.gov.
Influenza, or the flu, is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza types A or B viruses. Influenza viruses are easily spread by airborne respiratory droplets from person to person (often by sneezing or coughing).
Symptoms of infection include fever, muscle aches, headache, malaise (a general feeling of sickness), cough, sore throat, and runny nose. The flu causes mild illness in most people, the majority of whom will not need medical care or antiviral drugs, and usually recover in less than two weeks. Some people, however, can suffer flu complications that result in being hospitalized. Sometimes influenza infection results in death.
Pneumonia, bronchitis, sinus infections and ear infections are examples of more severe flu-related complications. The flu also can make chronic health problems worse. For example, people with asthma may experience more frequent asthma attacks while they have the flu. The flu may also worsen congestive heart failure in people with this condition.
Children younger than 5 but especially children younger than 2 years of age, adult 65 years and older, pregnant women and individuals with various chronic medical conditions are at greatest risk for hospitalization and possibly death related to infection.p>
A full list of high-risk conditions can be found at:
If your flu symptoms are mild, you should stay home and avoid contact with others. Getting plenty of rest, drinking fluids, and avoiding alcohol and tobacco will help your body to fight off the illness more quickly. If you use over-the-counter medications to relieve symptoms, it is important to follow the manufacturer's instructions. Protect others by covering your mouth when coughing and sneezing, wash your hands frequently, and stay at home while you are feeling ill.
If you are in a high risk group and have symptoms, or you are very sick or worried about your illness, contact your health care provider.
Influenza viruses are constantly changing, so it is not unusual for new strains of influenza virus to emerge each year. For more information on how flu viruses change, visit “How the flu Virus Can Change”:
This year's influenza vaccines were made using the following strains:
The B/Brisbane/60/2008 is a change from last year's formulation.
Yes. The live vaccine (FluMist®) may suppress a positive response to a tuberculin skin testing (TST or PPD) in a person who is infected with tuberculosis (TB), resulting in a false negative skin test. If a person needs TB skin testing and LAIV, you can correctly administer both in one of three ways
Influenza vaccine does not cause flu illness. Some vaccinated people may have mild flu-like symptoms, such as mild fever and muscle aches which are caused by the immune system's response to the vaccine. These side effects are not the same as having influenza, but people often confuse them.
Some people think because the nasal spray flu vaccine contains live viruses that it can cause flu illness. The live viruses in the nasal flu vaccine (LAIV) are weakened and cannot cause flu illness. They are designed to only cause a mild infection in the cooler temperatures within the nose. They cannot infect the lungs or other areas where warmer temperatures occur.
Fluzone®, Fluzone® Pediatric, Fluzone® High-Dose (HD), and Fluzone® Intradermal are inactivated injectable influenza virus vaccines manufactured by Sanofi-Pasteur. Presentations available this year include a multi-dose vial and a thimerosal-free single-dose syringe.
Fluzone and Fluzone Pediatric are licensed for persons aged 6 months and older, Fluzone HD is licensed for persons aged 65 years and older and Fluzone Intradermal is licensed for persons aged 18 through 64 years. DoD only contracted for Fluzone and Fluzone Pediatric this season.
ACIP recommends the use of injectable vaccines for immunization of persons described as eligible in manufacturer package inserts and for whom the live virus vaccine (FluMist®) is contraindicated.
The following populations should not be immunized with the Live Attenuated Intranasal Vaccine: