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swine flu situation for under 5s worrying me BUT NO vaccine available for them.

(226 Posts)
waitingwaiting Tue 04-Jan-11 12:28:11

I've got a one year old and a 3 year old. 3 year old going back to Nursery School tomorrow. I must admit that I am very worried about the swine flu situation for the under 5s.

According to the Daily Mirror (30th Jan)the Swine flu is at epidemic levels for children aged 1-5 and paedriatric hospitals are close to 'not coping' - and the Telegraph (31 dec) also reports the same - Critically ill include 42 children under 5 and flu levels have doubled with that age group.

Okay, I guess parents have very differing views on this but I must say that I am rather concerned...

I've tried absolutely loads of avenues to see if I can get the vaccine for my under 3 year old with No success what so ever.

Boots/supermarkets etc wont give it, they will however dispense it under prescription for GP to adminster But my GP wont do a prescription. Bupa wont do it. In fact everywhere I try wont.

All I want to do is try to protect my family but just dont know how. The flu jabs have traditionally been offered for the elderly as thats the age the flu has affected before, however now we have a different strain of flu which does target the young however no one seems to want to protect the young and offer the vaccine.

It was offered to pregnant women last year and in turn protected the unborn baby, which I had, however now my baby is one years old, its as if its no longer important as no one will be prepared to protect her from the flu, despite the fact that she could be very poorly if she had it. Is it worth risking even one childs life? no. I dont think so.

Anyway, I'm rambling on a bit here, point is I want to protect my children and get them vaccinated but just cant. Anyone else in the same situation? and how do you feel about it? Why is it that all adults can easily get protected, yet children cant?

Many thanks


shefliesthrutheair Wed 05-Jan-11 13:30:19

I have a huge choice to make: can anyone help me/give a perspective/experience?

I have the choice to give my dd (13-months) either the MMR or the H1N1 vaccination this aft at 3pm. My doc says normally he would advise the MMR, but in a flu epidemic he cannot advise me. We're flying on two long-haul flights in 4 weeks time so that increases the risk of catching everything.

Help! What do I do!! I have an hour and half to decide...

shefliesthrutheair Wed 05-Jan-11 13:31:55

p.s. for anyone trying to get a vacc, this is left-over stock from earlier this year, not the seasonal flu jab. Worth asking your gps about that...

Elibean Wed 05-Jan-11 13:48:11

Is your ds in an 'at-risk' group?

Very hard decision, no idea what I'd do - possibly the MMR, if he's healthy and thriving??

Elibean Wed 05-Jan-11 13:48:36

More importantly, just know that whatever you decide is the right decision - there is no black/white here!

PrivetDancer Wed 05-Jan-11 13:52:48

Shellie, I would go for the flu jab today and then mmr in two weeks time - they only need 2 weeks between jabs don't they, so you'd have both done before hols and the flu seems more likely to be prevalent on an airplane at the moment and it takes about 4 weeks to get immunity from the jab so that's why I'd go with that first.

LarkinSky Wed 05-Jan-11 13:52:54

Not of any practical help to you, but I just got the vaccine for my 22 month old, here in Switzerland, prior to a trip back to the UK because I was worried. Here you can get it on request at any GP, but they're not giving it to under 5's automatically - it's the parents' choice.

Hope you manage to find it. This is not fact of course, but according to the paediatrician, there is a Swine flu epidemic here in Switzerland where the population is only 7 million, so I guess it must be at least similar proportions in the UK.

shefliesthrutheair Wed 05-Jan-11 13:53:19

No, she's not at risk apart from being under 5. We're now thinking about changing our flights to two weeks later to get both jabs in there... fingers crossed... last minute decision!

PrivetDancer Wed 05-Jan-11 13:53:33

Sorry, sheflies, not shellie!

shefliesthrutheair Wed 05-Jan-11 13:55:47

that's alright ;-)

my doc says 4 weeks between them... I wish it was 2! :-(

Fayrazzled Wed 05-Jan-11 14:04:45

My daughter (3) had pneumonia before Christmas. I have kept her away from preschool this week because I'm frightened about her getting swine flu when her immune system is already weakened by the pneumonia. I'm not usually a worrywart when it comes to my children's health- I usually take a fairly robust approach- but I am concerned about this.

Soupspoon Wed 05-Jan-11 14:10:01

does anyone know if you can get Swine flu twice? DD had it last year...

Patsy99 Wed 05-Jan-11 14:15:58

Actually - just looked up the webchat advice about whether the pandemic swine flu jab from last year still offers protection.

Apparently it's unclear:-

"Dr David Salisbury Tue 21-Dec-10 12:12:58


Hello and welcome.
Last year my children both received the H1N1 vaccination - will they still be receiving any protection from this?
Many thanks.

^Last year when swine 'flu emerged, it was clear that the under-fives were indeed a risk group. For that reason, we recommended that they should be vaccinated. However, we also saw that many of them got infected and will now be immune against H1N1 (swine 'flu). At the moment, we are sticking with our usual seasonal flu policy, that doesn't include routine vaccination for under-fives, although this is something that we're looking at for the future.

santamax, If your children were vaccinated last year, there's a good chance that they will still get some protection from the vaccination. At this stage, it's impossible to know but time will tell!"^

SammEC Wed 05-Jan-11 14:25:02

I am absolutley terrified, I am no longer sending my little one 2yrs to playgroup it is not worth it, i have looked into private but noone does it it is a scandal!!!angry

hmmSleep Wed 05-Jan-11 14:37:23

<waves to privetdancer>

My Surgery won't give it to my ds, 3yrs, who suffers from chronic croup, they suggested trying boots but didn't know if they were giving it to under 18's. I've tried phoning my local branch but can't get through, does anybody know? Also wondering if worth getting it myself, at least then they can't catch it from me?

MedicalEd Wed 05-Jan-11 14:39:20

Milliways - I don't understand this because the seasonal flu vaccines were provided by the manufacturers on a sale or return basis. So any GP practice who did over order would not lose money...

LeninGrad Wed 05-Jan-11 14:39:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

nutsandtangerines Wed 05-Jan-11 14:51:38

None of the high st pharmacies will do it for under 18s or pg women - the latter can get it on the NHS so it's clear that the pharmacies are just being over cautious (= litigation-scared).

The current seasonal flu jab covers swine flu, yes? This is what I am trying to get for dd, I am engaged in a complicated and off-the-record negotiation with my GP - I think she has kind of agreed to do it for £15. I am playing the pregnancy card, saying I don't want it in the house when I have a tiny baby. As I am vaccinated and planning to bf I hope the new baby will have some protection anyway, but I just don't want dd (19 months) to get it.

redshinyshoes Wed 05-Jan-11 14:56:12

My Health Visitor said today that the Deparemnt of Health may chnage their policy and she will keep me informed, said the surgery have been inundated with calls. She also said DH and I should get vaccinated at a supermarket pharmacy as it will mean we won't be able to catch it and give it to DC's

libelulle Wed 05-Jan-11 15:00:19

Postcode lottery here is dreadful! Our surgery did all 4 of us. DD is asthmatic (not on steroid inhalers tho whomovedmycheese) and under hospital chest clinic, so straightforward, as is DS who was prem. Bt nurse insisted on doing me and DH on spurious grounds we were mildly asthmatic as children! Nurse was taking matters into her own hands really - as she saw it, there wasn't much point vaccinating half the family, as our children were still at risk if DH or I brought flu into the house.

redshinyshoes Wed 05-Jan-11 15:03:39

If any of you live in London I have heard they are offering at the medi centres in London train stations for under 18's

SammEC Wed 05-Jan-11 15:04:57

I am so scared of catching it and then my kids getting it,who the hell will take care of them? Surely it makes sense to vaccinate then their wouldnt be such panic and it wouldnt be spread so readily, I reckon that it all comes down to money once again. I am beyond panicking now, My little man will not be going out unneccesarily now and i have dettol galore in my house and am doing all I can to prevent this but my daughter is at college and this really scares me, especially in light of the news today!!

If you're scared of catching it and giving it to your children, you can get vaccinated yourself (although likely to have to pay).

Rhian82 Wed 05-Jan-11 15:12:37

Did they not get vaccinated last year? DS was given the swine flu jab (just one, no booster needed) last Jan when he was 1.3, and from what I've heard he's still protected by that which is why they're not doing it this year.

mynameis Wed 05-Jan-11 15:13:04

I am outraged by how difficult this is. If we want our child/children vaccinated and are happy to pay then there should be the facilities in place for us to do this.

I see Mumsnet is much quoted in press articles about this issue, is there no where we can put in a collective complaint too?

hazeyjane Wed 05-Jan-11 15:16:13

Rhian, I have just spoken to my HV about the jab, and she said that if they had a jab last year then they will need another one this year, it doesn't protect them for longer than 12 months, and if you had one when you are pregnant then immunity doesn't last for more than 6 months.

They are also combining the jab with a seasonal flu jab.

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