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What's the Latest with the Flu?


October 2019

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) policy statement "Recommendations for Prevention and Control of Influenza in Children, 2019–2020" offers updated recommendations for routine use of seasonal influenza vaccines and antiviral medications for the prevention and treatment of influenza in children. The AAP and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continue to recommend annual influenza immunization of all children without medical contraindications, starting at 6 months of age. See the AAP News article for additional details.

The AAP launched a new "Say Boo to the Flu" social media campaign that includes graphics for Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. The AAP will use #FluBeforeBoo to encourage everyone to get their flu shot before Halloween. The AAP will also be utilizing the hashtags #Ivax2Protect, #VaccinesWork, and #FightFlu throughout the 2019-2020 flu season. Visit the AAP Immunizations web page for additional information and sample tweets that can be shared on your own social media accounts.

AAP Influenza Implementation Guidance

The AAP has updated its Influenza Implementation Guidance for the 2019-2020 influenza season. This material is designed to help practitioners and pediatric office staff prevent influenza by delivering influenza vaccine according to AAP policy.

Free Online Course: Influenza Update - Prevention, Treatment, and Management of Influenza

The AAP offers a free online PediaLink course that provides key information and recommendations specific to the 2019-2020 flu season. The purpose of the course is to educate pediatric health care professionals on the current AAP policy recommendations for routine use of seasonal influenza vaccine and antiviral medications for the prevention and treatment of influenza in infants, children, and adolescents.

Survey: Delivery of Influenza Vaccine for the 2019-2020 Influenza Season

The AAP is interested in gathering information from its members as to delivery of influenza vaccine during the 2019-2020 influenza season, namely delays in initial receipt of any public and purchased vaccine stock. This survey is most applicable to pediatric practices participating in the Vaccines for Children (VFC) Program and is best completed once initial doses of both public and purchased influenza vaccine are received. Please complete this short survey to assist the AAP.

Vaccine Dosing Recommendations

Children younger than 6 months of age cannot receive a flu vaccine, so they must rely on the children and adults around them to be vaccinated to protect them from influenza viruses. Children 6 months through 8 years of age need 2 doses of flu vaccine if they have never been vaccinated or if they did not receive at least 2 doses of any trivalent or quadrivalent influenza vaccine before July 1, 2019. The interval between the 2 doses should be at least 4 weeks. A child requires only 1 dose if they have previously received 2 or more total doses of any trivalent or quadrivalent influenza vaccine before July 1, 2019. The 2 previous doses do not need to have been received during the same influenza season or consecutive influenza seasons. See the updated AAP dosing algorithm:

Number of 2019–2020 Seasonal Influenza Vaccine Doses for Children Based on Age and Previous Vaccination History


a The 2 doses need not have been received during the same season or consecutive seasons.
b Administer 2 doses based on age at receipt of the first dose of influenza vaccine during the season. Children who receive the first dose before their ninth birthday should receive 2 doses, even if they turn 9 years old during the same season.
*Reference: https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/144/4/e20192478

CDC Health Care Professional Fight Flu Toolkit

The CDC has developed a series of resources to assist primary care physicians, nurses, pharmacists, and other health care professionals to protect patients against influenza. The CDC Health Care Professional Fight Flu Toolkit provides materials to assist in making strong influenza vaccine recommendations, facilitating productive conversations with patients, and improving influenza vaccination rates.

Influenza Recommendations for Children: Webinar for Clinicians

In September, the AAP collaborated with the CDC to conduct a Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA) webinar titled, "2019–2020 Recommendations for Influenza Prevention and Treatment in Children: An Update for Pediatric Providers". During this COCA webinar, subject matter experts from the AAP and CDC discussed strategies that primary care providers and medical subspecialists could use to improve flu prevention and control in children for the 2019-2020 season. The PowerPoint slides from the webinar and a recording of the presentations are posted on the webinar web page.

Additional Information

See the AAP Red Book Online Influenza Resource page, CDC FluView, or contact DisasterReady@aap.org.

This message was supported in part by Cooperative Agreement Number 5NU38OT000282-02-00, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the Department of Health and Human Services.