As influenza cases rise in Australia, Seqirus prepares for US flu season

COVID lockdowns caused a much shorter flu season than usual, but we’re already seeing record numbers of influenza in Australia and elsewhere in the Southern Hemisphere – showing the importance of flu vaccination for the 2022/2023 flu season.

In Australia, 27,000 cases were reported in the week leading up to June 2022, “roughly 10 times higher than the five-year average, which includes the pandemic period,” said The Telegraph. “In 2019, a particularly bad year, 14,000 infections were recorded in the same week.”

“While influenza rates have been low since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, relaxed COVID-19 mitigation measures coupled with the return to usual activities could increase the likelihood of a flu resurgence such as what we are seeing already in the Southern Hemisphere,” said Dr. Gregg Sylvester, Chief Health Officer for Seqirus, one of the world’s largest influenza vaccine providers (and a member of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization).

And with new COVID variants rising, flu vaccination will be more important than ever this year, to avoid a “twindemic” of COVID and influenza that could overwhelm healthcare systems, as Good Day BIO has reported.

Vaccination ‘the best way to help protect against the flu’

“An annual seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to help protect against flu,” says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “Vaccination has been shown to have many benefits including reducing the risk of flu illnesses, hospitalizations, and even the risk of flu-related death in children.”

According to the CDC, influenza caused up to 52,000 deaths and 710,000 hospitalizations in the U.S. between 2010 and 2020.

But the biotech industry is getting ready. Seqirus said in a press release on July 11 that it’s ready to send more than 55 million doses of cell-based, adjuvanted, and egg-based seasonal flu vaccines to healthcare providers and pharmacies across the U.S., with options available for all eligible age groups.

“This season, Seqirus’ portfolio of influenza vaccines is poised to provide protection to more people than ever before, including vulnerable populations like young children and adults 65 years of age and older,” said Dave Ross, Vice President, North America Commercial Operations for Seqirus.

The Seqirus vaccines include:

  • Flucelvax® Quadrivalent, the first and only cell-based, quadrivalent influenza vaccine, which is now available for the first full season for people six months and older.
  • Fluad® Quadrivalent, which is the first and only adjuvanted quadrivalent seasonal influenza vaccine for adults 65 and older and recommended by the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP).
  • Afluria® Quadrivalent, an egg-based, quadrivalent flu shot that can be used on people who are eligible and are at least six months old.


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