[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
September 20, 1985

Re: Efficacy of Influenza Vaccine-Reply

Author Affiliations

Division of Viral Diseases Center for Infectious Diseases Centers for Disease Control Atlanta
Michigan Department of Public Health Lansing

JAMA. 1985;254(11):1451-1452. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03360110041016

In Reply.—  We certainly agree with Drs Harper and Gibson that influenza virus infections continue to pose a serious threat to the health and well-being of elderly patients and that aggressive efforts to prevent the disease and its associated complications are clearly warranted. We also agree that a systematic and varied approach is necessary for optimal control, which currently consists of annual vaccination of high-risk patients and medical-care personnel and appropriate use of amantadine hydrochloride for prophylaxis and therapy.1 Live attenuated influenza vaccines, rimantadine, and ribavirin may prove to be highly effective additions to this armamentarium, but none of these preparations will be licensed and commercially available for several years. In the meantime, we must continue to promote and use measures that are currently available, with inactivated influenza vaccine representing the most practical and least expensive strategy. While research continues to improve the immunogenicity of these vaccines, to say