General Question

jca's avatar

Would you get the 2011 H1N1 "swine flu" vaccine for your child or for yourself?

Asked by jca (36010points) December 8th, 2010

In the county I work in, Westchester County, there has just been the first pediatric flu death (an “otherwise healthy 4 year old boy) from H1N1 “swine flu.” This makes me very anxious, as a parent of an otherwise healthy pre-schooler. However, I know that there is always controversy about flu vaccines not being tested enough, not vaccinating against all strains of the flu, or about the vaccines causing other serious complications and side effects.

Would you get the 2011 H1N1 flu vaccine for either yourself or your child?

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42 Answers

chyna's avatar

I get the flu shot every year.

RocketGuy's avatar

My whole family of 4 has had the H1N1 flu vaccine – so far so good. We did not want to grow tails and a snout nose.

Mariah's avatar

I was told that my regular seasonal flu shot contained protection against swine flu as well… but if that’s not the case then I’d gladly get a separate vaccine for H1N1, yeah.

The way I see it, there is the occasional complication possibly resulting from a vaccine, but they’re extremely rare. You know what’s not rare? The flu.

Cruiser's avatar

No…by now I think that virus has circulated throughout the entire world population that there has been enough exposure that most if not all have developed a enough immunity to it for if or when you get it, it will be nothing worse than a regular flu. Of course if you are in a high risk category than I would certainly get it. ;)

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Cruiser I am in a high risk category and still won’t get it;)

coffeenut's avatar

No, I don’t get the regular flu shot and I won’t get this one. too much B.S hype

Cruiser's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille I didn’t say force yourself to get one if you are in a high risk group!! A vast majority of the people dying from H1N1 are high riskers such as diabetics, heart disease, pregnant women and those with compromised immune systems. Your dice to roll!

Rarebear's avatar


lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Cruiser -I know you didn’t say that….so stop trying to make me get a flu shot,ok?? XD

crisw's avatar

Read this lengthy discussion.

I think it said just about all there is to say.

Note which side posted emotion and hyperbole and which side posted facts.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

As far as I know, there is no separate H1N1 flu vaccine this year. The H1N1 flu type is included in the regular flu vaccine.

I got mine, fer sure.

Coloma's avatar

I got the H1N1 vaccine before traveling to Asia last Feb.-March.

There was a predicted outbreak on the island of Taiwan and a large segment of unvaccinated citizens.

Nearly everyone was wearing masks on the metro system and all over Taipei city.
Some of which may have been due to sensitivity to the pollution factor in the city.

I just got the regular flu shot and have done so the past 2 years ( this is the 3rd ) and have had no flus or ill effect.

I had a horrible flu while traveling through the Southwest in 06 that left me f—ked up in a hotel room for 4 days before I could even think about resuming my travels, and another bout in 07.

It is worth it to me 100% and I have changed my mind completely about the vaccines in the past few years.

All I know is I have not had any flu for 3 years now and that’s good enough for me!

JLeslie's avatar

H1N1 is in the regular flu vaccine this year. I never get the flu vaccine. I would think about it maybe for my child if the flu was in large numbers where I lived, but I would want to know if the cases were actually the flus that are in the vaccine. A few years ago they guessed completely wrong on which flus to include. Meanwhile, if someone is hospitalized or died from the flu or complications secondary to the flu, I do trust the strain was isolated and the reports are correct. So, I am not questioning a child died recently from H1N1, as the OP stated

JLeslie's avatar

@jca I just reread your question and thought I would explain that we, our government, tracks flus as they travel around the world. Each year typically three strains of flu are chosen to be in the US flu vaccine for our flu season, a best guess by our health officials. Obviously, the decisions are made ahead of our typical flu season, to get lead time for the manufacturers to produce and distribute the vaccines. Last year, the late knowledge of H1N1 coming out of Mexico meant there was a separate vaccine, aside from the one already scheduled for the flu, that they rushed to develop and bring to market. This year H1N1 is logically one of the three included in the standard flu shot.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@Coloma That happened to me, too. The one year I didn’t get the flu shot was my junior year in college (just forgot, I guess). I got a real whopping case of the flu that turned into walking pneumonia and wound up spending my 21st birthday in the infirmary.

Now I’m one of the first to get vaccinated every year…

Summum's avatar

Just the opposite for me everytime I get the shot I get the flu.

tinyfaery's avatar

I never get a flu shot and I never get the flu. I see no need for unnecessary shots. Eek.

snowberry's avatar

No. However my daughter is in a career that requires it, so she will have to, like it or not.

Seaofclouds's avatar

As others have said, the H1N1 vaccine is part of the regular seasonal flu shot this year. I will be getting mine and my son already got his. My husband has also already received his.

Cruiser's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille Be a good lil’ soldier and hold still!! You get a cherry lollipop if you dol!!

JLeslie's avatar

@cruiser If you have not had it, you are not immune. It is possible other flus might give a person some immunity to H1N1 but your idea that it travelled the world makes us safer is a little off. What is true is that it is hard for the virus to travel when most people have been infected, a herd immunity, but the guy who has not had it, still can get it, he has not developed immunity, it is the people around him who have. The exception would be people born with natural immunity who would never get it, or might be carriers without being symptomatic.

Coloma's avatar

My opinion is can’t hurt, might help, and it definitly has helped me the last few years. lol

Traveling aside, I am single and have a micro-farm..I HAVE to be able to tend to my critters and property needs regardless of whatever is happening.

If I can’t drag my ass out of bed my animals suffer, and that is not acceptable to me. ;-)

Not to mention that there are so many people that carelessly expose others to their effluvious emissions with no regard.

When I am sick I stay HOME, and have respect for those I might come into contact with.

marinelife's avatar

Yes, I would. Especially for my child.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Cruiser—Not gonna happen…now bend over and take yours—XD

Coloma's avatar

I also vaccinate my geese and do the West Nile vac. for them as well.

All horses are now required to have the WN vac. too.

My little zone is covered, animal and human. ;-)

Cruiser's avatar

@JLeslie That was what was so unique to H1N1 this time around that the symptoms were so mild many people never put 2 and 2 together and most testing done to determine whether it was H1N1 or not was simple swabs or symptom algorithms and very few were actually typed. Too costly and far too many people with symptoms to even bother. If you presented with fever last year at the Doctors, you got Tamiflu. My point was that it was so widespread within the communities that the H1N1 germs were everywhere and there IMO now has to be some herd immunity and/or adaptive immunity from last years go-around.

JLeslie's avatar

@Cruiser oh, I thought you were saying something else. I completely agree that a lot of flu last year was probably H1N1 and never tested. Flu is almost never identified unless it is causing serious illness and death, as I mentioned above. I have never gone to the doctor when I, or my husband has had the flu (except of course when I was a very young child with an out of control fever). I have only had the flu once in adulthood, back in my mid twenties. Basically, I think of H1N1 as being like any other flu, except it seems statistically young children were a little more at risk for grave complications than other flus that have circulated in recent years. I don’t think we are at the level of herd immunity, but I get your point.

amyh2477's avatar

wife and mother of 3, my family never gets any kind of flu shot

TexasDude's avatar

Nope, I’m really not all that concerned with swine flu….

…wasn’t it supposed to kill us all off a year or two ago anyway? Or was that avian flu? Or mad cow disease? I can’t keep my apocalyptic pandemics straight anymore.

Coloma's avatar


You can deeply kiss my geese without trepidation. lol

daytonamisticrip's avatar

I got it last year and haven’t grown a third leg so I think your safe getting it.

Rarebear's avatar

My last word on the subect is that I’ve taken care of two critically ill people in the ICU with H1N1 and both were healthy young women in their 20s with very small children. They both survived, but one had a prolonged hospital stay for weeks that required tracheostomy and intensive physical rehabilitation.

A flu shot would have been much less hassle.

crazyivan's avatar

Absolutely. Will and have.

There is a lot of misinformation about the risks associated with vaccines but all credible scientific study shows without a doubt that the risks associated with getting vaccinated are significantly lower than the risks of doing without.

Keep in mind that this is a decision you are making for more than just yourself and your child. Herd immunity is compromised when healthy people go unvaccinated making life a lot riskier for people who are either (a) too young or old to get vaccinated or (b) allergic to the culture in which the vaccine was grown.

I strongly urge you to do some independent research and try to use only credible, peer-reviewed sources. You will doubtless come to the same conclusion I have: Not only is it safe and commendable to get yourself and your child vaccinated, it is selfish and misguided not to.

YARNLADY's avatar

I don’t do flu shots for myself, but I think my toddler grandkids have received theirs.

My reasoning is that I hardly ever go out and when I do, I wear gloves. In the past, when ever I took a preventative shot, it made me sick.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

No, I wouldn’t.

TonyDahlinVenice's avatar

Never! Myself and my children are in good health without artificial interference. Tony Dahlin Venice

crazyivan's avatar

Any reasoning there Tony or are you simply expressing your opinion? (Word of warning, I’m in virulent opposition to the ludacris “anti-vax” movement and I can not yet be vaccinated against)

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