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Influenza Vaccine for 20018/2019 Flu Season

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Ratsima

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I had my wife call Bangkok Hospital to see if they had the current vaccine. They told her "no" and that they only have the "4 สายพันธุ์" (4 strains) version. Well, the 2019 vaccine is four strains. But, somehow they hospital doesn't know.

So, I check the Bangkok Hospital main site and they do list what seems to be the correct vaccine, but it says it's for 2018 and available through 31 July 2018. WTF?

So, I check the St. Mary's hospital web site and click on the "About Us" link which results in a totally blank page.

Welcome to Thailand 4.0.

BTW, here are the WHO recommended strains for the 2018/2019 flu season:

- an A/Michigan/45/2015 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;
- an A/Singapore/INFIMH-16-0019/2016 (H3N2)-like virus;
- a B/Colorado/06/2017-like virus (B/Victoria/2/87 lineage);
- a B/Phuket/3073/2013-like virus (B/Yamagata/16/88 lineage).


Online Coolkorat

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This is the current advice for the over 65's in the UK from the NHS: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/751983/PHE_Flu_vaccinations_for_over_65_flyer_.pdf

There is more about the vaccines here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/flu-influenza-vaccine/. Interesting that they are recommending a trivalent vaccine for over 65's, rather than the quadrivalent you are looking for. With the NHS this could be both a cost and availability issue.


Ratsima

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It is interesting. The document I was looking at was the Thai version of WHO advice.

But it seems that, as usual, health advice is often contradictory or at least not as clear as it might be.


Ratsima

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I went to Bangkok Hospital Ratchasima today for a flu shot. They're having a Father's Day special (the late King's birthday), so I thought I'd take advantage. It was less than 700 baht.

First stop was the ground floor reception area where I was directed to the second floor reception. The receptionist there determined the reason for my visit and referred me to a nearby clerk who filled out a form and asked if I were going to pay by cash or credit. I said "credit" so she took my card and put it in a cut little plastic sleeve. From there I was directed to the fourth floor where another receptionist directed me to the proper department. There I was greeted by yet another receptionist who directed me to sit in the waiting area.

After a few minutes, a nurse (?) directed me to a small room where she recorded my height (same as usual), my weight (OK), temperature (normal) and blood pressure (slightly elevated, as usual). Then she took me back out to the waiting area. A few minutes later another woman took me to a doctor's office. The doctor asked me no medical questions, but did inquire as to my state of origin in the US (California) as he printed and signed some forms. He took me out of his office where another woman took me back to the waiting area where I was directed to sit.

The wait was longer than expected but gave me a chance to finish reading the Bangkok Post and to obtain and nearly finish a free bottle of drinking water. After about half an hour another woman came and took me into the injections room. There I met another woman and was reunited with my credit card, still in its cute plastic sleeve. That woman showed me to the nurse who actually administered the injection. Once finished, yet another woman appeared who took me to the cashier.

While waiting for the credit card to be processed, I carefully counted and realized that to get a simple flu shot I had been seen by 13 different hospital employees. Perhaps that explains why Thailand's unemployment rate is so low.