The Swiss population is anything but united when it comes to getting vaccinated. The topic of vaccination is highly controversial in our country. We can explain everything for you. You can then decide for yourself which vaccinations make sense for you.
Seasonal flu is an illness triggered by the influenza virus. Particularly in the winter months, a significant portion of the Swiss population suffers from various forms of flu-like illness. While all of these are viral infections, they are not to be confused with the influenza virus. Flu triggered by the influenza virus can be more serious than an infection caused by other viruses. Contracting the influenza virus can lead to serious complications. It’s worth noting that the influenza virus mutates every year, which is why a new vaccine needs to be developed annually.
The influenza virus is transmitted by airborne droplets, i.e. sneezing and coughing, as well as by physical contact with contaminated objects such as door handles.
But with the right precautions, we can all avoid getting the flu. Maintaining high standards of hygiene (e.g. washing our hands regularly) and avoiding close contact with people displaying symptoms of flu can reduce the risk of contracting the virus. A healthy diet and exercise can also have a positive effect on the immune system and lower the individual risk of infection.
The Harding Centre for Risk Literacy at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development has conducted scientific studies to set out the potential risks and benefits of the flu vaccination and has presented these in a series of model calculations.
For every 1,000 vaccinated people (blue bar), 3 to 125 people contracted flu caused by the influenza virus and 77 to 313 people contracted a flu-like illness over a maximum period of one year. By contrast, for every 1,000 people who were not vaccinated (red bar), 13 to 125 people contracted flu caused by the influenza virus and 94 to 377 people contracted a flu-like illness. With or without vaccination, the same number of people consulted a doctor because of respiratory illness.
The Harding Centre for Risk Literacy also examined the potential risks and benefits of influenza vaccination for senior citizens.
For every 1,000 senior citizens who were not vaccinated (red bar), 39 to 98 people contracted a flu-like illness over one year. 4 to 17 people were hospitalised for influenza or pneumonia. 1 to 22 senior citizens who were not vaccinated died.
For every 1,000 vaccinated senior citizens (blue bar), 21 to 84 people contracted a flu-like illness over one year. 3 to 13 people were hospitalised for influenza or pneumonia. 5 to 14 vaccinated senior citizens died.
COVID-19 can cause symptoms similar to those of flu. If you have any cold or flu symptoms, you should stay at home. Get tested for COVID-19 or call your doctor to discuss what to do next. Even if your COVID-19 test result is negative, you should avoid contact with other people for at least 24 hours after your symptoms have disappeared.
Our basic insurance covers the costs of the flu vaccination (minus excess and deductible) for people at increased risk of complications from the flu. This group includes:
In other cases, Helsana pays a contribution for the flu vaccination from the SANA, COMPLETA and COMPLETA EXTRA* supplementary insurance. SANA reimburses 75% of the costs for preventive measures, up to a maximum of CHF 500 per calendar year; COMPLETA covers 90% of such costs, up to a maximum of CHF 750. In addition to the cost contribution from COMPLETA, from COMPLETA EXTRA*, you receive 100% of the costs of preventive medical care, up to a maximum of CHF 500 per calendar year.
* Can only be taken out in combination with COMPLETA
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