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How does the influenza vaccine work?

Page last updated 24 May 2018

Influenza vaccines cause your body to produce substances called antibodies.  If a vaccinated person comes into contact with the influenza virus, these antibodies are then available to destroy it.  There are different strains of influenza virus, and which strains are circulating changes from year to year. Each year, experts from around the world predict what strains will be circulating in the upcoming ‘flu season’.  Hence it is important to get vaccinated ever year, so that your body is able to produce the antibodies that are specific to the flu that will mostly likely occur to give you the best possible protection.

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