Data source: European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control; Eurostat, the European Commission
Map created by CUHK SpatioEpi Group
In Europe, the Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) recommended member states to develop policies and implement their own action plan on improving influenza vaccination coverage. The map shows if influenza vaccination action plans have been implemented, size of populations above age 65 and vaccination coverage among the senior citizens of European countries in the 2012-13 flu season.
Overall, the vaccination coverage rate of senior citizens reported in Europe varied widely across countries. Generally speaking, countries at higher ranking for their influenza vaccination action plan gave a higher vaccination coverage rate. United Kingdom, Netherlands and Ireland are good examples that illustrate such phenomenon as they gave a vaccination rate of over 50%. Italy and Sweden did not have any action plan but their vaccination coverage were high at 55% and 44% respectively.
Data for this map were obtained from reports of ECDC and Eurostat, the European Commission.
Remark 1: Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein are not member states of the European Union but they have completed surveys by ECDC.
Remark 2: Populations of age over 65 were assessed to measure vaccination rate of senior citizens in all countries except Malta (age 55), Germany, Iceland and the Netherlands (age 60).
In the northern hemisphere, influenza season commonly falls between November and February every year. Severe infection of people without immune protection against influenza may result in hospitalization or even death.
Vaccination is proven to be an effective measure to prevent the spread of the virus and protect individuals from severe complications of influenza disease. Unfortunately, misunderstanding, doubts on its effectiveness and fears of potential side effect are the reasons behind the suboptimal vaccination coverage rate throughout the world.
World Health Organization recommends annual vaccinations of (i) vulnerable populations such as elderlies, young children and patients with chronic diseases and (ii) health care workers. In Hong Kong, the government offers free vaccination to elderlies and health care workers annually from October to February. For further information, please visit website of Centre of Health Protection: http://www.chp.gov.hk/en/view_content/17980.html
世界衛生組織建議以下兩類人士每年接種流感疫苗：一. 高風險人士如長者，幼童及長期病患者；二. 醫護界從業員。香港政府於每年十月至二月均安排長者及醫護界從業員免費注射疫苗。更多詳情請參考衛生防護中心網頁：http://www.chp.gov.hk/tc/view_content/17980.html
Further information 詳細資料