I know, yet another vaccine! But this is actually a very good idea if you happen to be in one of the risk groups for complications as I am. Dr. Schuchat is sending out this letter to providers to urge them to vaccinate those of us that are at risk for pneumonia should we come down with flu.
Quote from www.cdc.gov
During influenza outbreaks, pneumococcal vaccines may be useful in preventing secondary pneumococcal infections. As you know, PPSV is available for prevention of pneumococcal disease among adults and children 2 years of age and older who are at increased risk for pneumococcal disease, but many of those with indications have not yet received the vaccine. A 7-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine is recommended for all children <5 years of age.
CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommends a single dose of PPSV for all people 65 years and older and for persons 2 through 64 years of age with certain high-risk conditions (Box). People in these groups are at increased risk of pneumococcal disease as well as serious complications due to influenza virus infection. A single revaccination with PPSV is recommended at least 5 years after initial vaccination for people 65 years and older who were first vaccinated before age 65. A single revaccination is also recommended for people at highest risk of disease, such as those who have functional and anatomical asplenia, and those who have HIV infection, AIDS or malignancy and have at least five years elapsed from receipt of first vaccination.
All people who have existing indications for PPSV should be vaccinated according to current ACIP recommendations during this 2009-2010 influenza season, which will likely include circulation of both seasonal and 2009 H1N1 influenza viruses. Special emphasis should be placed on vaccinating adults under 65 years of age who have established high-risk conditions; PPSV coverage among this group is very low and this group may be more likely to develop secondary bacterial pneumonia after an influenza infection. Use of PPSV among people without current indications for vaccination is not recommended at this time.
(hat tip avian flu diary)