The new 2010-2011 annual influenza vaccination recommendations issued by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices have included Fluzone High-Dose vaccine among the vaccines recommended for adults 65 years of age or older.

Individuals in this age group are among the hardest hit by influenza. On average in the United States, an estimated 90% of the 36,000 annual deaths attributed to influenza and its complications are in this age group.

Although they have the highest rates of annual immunization, they may not respond to standard-dose influenza vaccine as well as younger adults. As people age, their immune function tends to decrease, which makes older adults not only more susceptible to infections, but also less responsive to vaccination. In December 2009, the Food and Drug Administration licensed Fluzone, which is designed to help generate a stronger immune response in people 65 years of age or older.

Fluzone High-Dose vaccine is a payable benefit under Medicare Part B.

Source: American Lung Association