Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) on Tuesday announced that over 37,000 healthcare workers in Qatar have taken the flu vaccine, registering a 56 percent increase compared to last year.
The Flu vaccine is recommended for healthcare workers to protect them from getting flu and to reduce transmission of flu from them to their family, colleagues and patients.
"More healthcare workers than ever are now vaccinated against the seasonal flu," said Dr Hamad Eid Al Romaihi, Director of Health Protection and Communicable Diseases at Ministry of Public Health. "It is important that healthcare workers get vaccinated as early in the flu season as possible.
As in previous years we started vaccinating health care workers earlier than the public and this strategy have proven to be successful again, adding that "Most of those vaccinated are working at Hamad Medical Corporation and Primary Health Care Corporation."
Dr. Al Romaihi said healthcare workers care for elderly and at risk patients who are not able to generate the same level of protection from the flu vaccine, stressing that these vulnerable patients rely on the immunity of those who care for them to keep them safe.
"Seeing so many healthcare workers taking this vaccine this year is setting a great example for the wider community and also demonstrates their commitment to keeping their patients safe," he added.
Dr. Al Romaihi said that as we continue to battle Covid-19, it was more important than ever for healthcare workers and the community to get the flu vaccine this year. "A flu shot won't protect against Covid-19 but it does reduce the risk of becoming infected with the influenza virus," Dr. Al Romaihi said.
"Some people do get the flu despite having had the vaccine. However, they often have milder symptoms and shorter illnesses than those who go unvaccinated. This is why it is so important to get your flu shot this year - it's important to do everything we can to make sure medical resources are available for those who are the most seriously ill," Dr. Al Romaihi stated.
The free seasonal flu vaccine is available at Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) health centers, HMC outpatient clinics and designated private and semi-private clinics and hospitals across Qatar.