Today, MedImmune Specialty Care division of AstraZeneca (MedImmune Specialty Care) announced it has joined with actress Tia Mowry to raise awareness about the importance of an annual flu vaccination. To kick-off the campaign, MedImmune Specialty Care and Mowry unveiled an online video, “I Insist!” (www.YouTube.com/InsistOnTheMist), which uses comedy to educate busy families about the importance of living a healthy lifestyle and making flu vaccination a priority.
For Mowry, this includes vaccination with FluMistQuadrivalent, the first and only FDA-approved needle-free flu vaccine for eligible persons 2-49 years old. FluMist Quadrivalent is administered as a gentle mist sprayed into the nose, where the influenza virus usually enters the body.
Despite recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that everyone 6 months and older get vaccinated each year, less than half of adults and just over half of children in the U.S. get vaccinated. For this reason, Mowry is encouraging parents to learn about the importance of flu vaccination for their family.
“My hope is that our video will reinforce the value of flu vaccination and encourage families to speak with their doctors about the vaccine options available this flu season,” said Mowry, who stars in the reality show “Tia & Tamera” on the Style Network. “After a conversation with my doctor, we decided that needle-free FluMist Quadrivalent was the right choice for me and my family. So this year, we ‘Insist on the Mist!’”
“I Insist!” takes a closer look at a day in the life of Mowry, using humor to depict the demands of life as a busy actress, author, wife, and mother. However, when it comes to her family’s health, Mowry takes the time to learn about flu vaccination options and get her family vaccinated. In addition to the “I Insist!” video, the campaign will feature an interactive website (www.InsistOnTheMist.com) and a YouTube page (www.YouTube.com/InsistOnTheMist). The campaign will also issue a series of flu prevention tips and information about vaccination throughout the flu season on themed Facebook (www.Facebook.com/flumistquadrivalent) and Twitter (www.Twitter.com/InsistOnTheMist) pages.
The 2013-2014 influenza season marks the first time that quadrivalent influenza vaccines will be available in the U.S. Historically, seasonal flu vaccines have been trivalent formulations, meaning they protect against three subtypes of influenza viruses that commonly circulate among people today: influenza A (H1N1) viruses, influenza A (H3N2) viruses, and one strain of influenza B viruses. However, quadrivalent flu vaccines help protect against four strains: two strains of influenza A and two strains of influenza B.
“As we’ve seen every season, the flu is unpredictable and its severity can vary widely from one season to the next,” said Amisha Malhotra, M.D., a specialist in pediatric infectious diseases at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital and mother of one child. “As such, the single best way to protect yourself and your family from influenza is by getting an annual flu vaccination.”
FluMist Quadrivalent was developed from the foundation of MedImmune’s trivalent influenza vaccine, FluMist® (Influenza Vaccine Live, Intranasal). The most common side effects of FluMist Quadrivalent are runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, and fever over 100°F. Not all influenza vaccines are approved for all persons, and individuals should speak with their doctor or pharmacist to determine if they are eligible to receive FluMist Quadrivalent and if FluMist Quadrivalent is right for themselves or their family.
“FluMist Quadrivalent was the first quadrivalent flu vaccine to receive FDA approval, and MedImmune Specialty Care is the only flu vaccine manufacturer that has converted 100 percent of its U.S. supply to the quadrivalent formulation,” said Chris Ambrose, M.D., MedImmune Specialty Care’s Vice President of Medical & Scientific Affairs. “The company’s continued commitment to public health and patient health is evident with FluMist Quadrivalent.”
FluMist Quadrivalent will be available through private healthcare practices, public health departments, school-located vaccination programs, military bases, and select local and national retail pharmacies, including Target and Walgreens.
Important Safety and Eligibility Information for FluMist® Quadrivalent (Influenza Vaccine Live, Intranasal)
What is FluMist Quadrivalent?
FluMist Quadrivalent is a vaccine that is sprayed into the nose to help protect against influenza. It can be used in children, adolescents, and adults ages 2 through 49. FluMist Quadrivalent is similar to MedImmune’s trivalent influenza vaccine, except FluMist Quadrivalent provides protection against an additional influenza strain. FluMist Quadrivalent may not prevent influenza in everyone who gets vaccinated.
Who should not get FluMist Quadrivalent?
You should not get FluMist Quadrivalent if you have a severe allergy to eggs, gentamicin, gelatin, or arginine; have ever had a life-threatening reaction to influenza vaccinations; or are 2 through 17 years old and take aspirin or medicines containing aspirin – children or adolescents should not be given aspirin for 4 weeks after getting FluMist® (Influenza Vaccine Live, Intranasal) or FluMist Quadrivalent unless your healthcare provider tells you otherwise.
Children under 2 years old have an increased risk of wheezing (difficulty with breathing) after getting FluMist Quadrivalent.
Who may not be able to get FluMist Quadrivalent?
Tell your healthcare provider if you or your child are currently wheezing; have a history of wheezing if under 5 years old; have had Guillain-Barré syndrome; have a weakened immune system or live with someone who has a severely weakened immune system; have problems with your heart, kidneys, or lungs; have diabetes; are pregnant or nursing; or are taking Tamiflu®, Relenza®, amantadine, or rimantadine.
Your healthcare provider will decide if FluMist Quadrivalent is right for you or your child.
What are the most common side effects of FluMist Quadrivalent?
The most common side effects are runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, and fever over 100°F.
Please see complete Product Information, including Patient Information.
For more information, please visit www.flumistquadrivalent.com.