What is the flu?
The flu, also known as influenza, is a virus. It often starts with a sudden fever, coughing, muscle pain, aching limbs, headaches and general weakness. It can exacerbate existing chronic illnesses for those with weakened immune systems and the elderly, for example those with asthma or heart conditions. Other symptoms, such as a pneumonia or myocarditis, may also arise. These illnesses can even result in death.
It is important to differentiate between genuine flu symptoms (influenza) and a common cold. In the case of a common cold, the fever is often a lower temperature and the illness passes more easily and quickly.
Genuine flu symptoms can be treated within 48 hours using special medication, which prevents the influenza viruses from spreading. This treatment impedes any severe progression of the illness but does not prevent the condition itself.
Flu viruses are transmitted via droplet transmission, predominantly through coughs and sneezes. But it is also possible to spread the infection by hand. It only takes a few days from the time of infection for symptoms to appear.
Vaccination advice for children, adults and young people
The Austrian Vaccination Plan recommends the flu vaccination for any persons requiring protection against the flu.
It is also highly recommended that those at a high risk of developing a serious case of the illness receive the flu vaccination. This applies to people who have weakened body defences, such as the elderly, people who just suffered from a serious illness, people with chronic conditions, those with diabetes, people with cardiovascular diseases and other related conditions, as well as pregnant women and young children. Those who come into contact with these people should also be vaccinated: such as health service employees or those who have a high level of contact with people at work.
The flu virus changes frequently. For this reason, the composition of the vaccine is adjusted every year.
1 vaccination annually*, usually available from October.
* Children aged between 6 months and 8 years, who have not been previously vaccinated, should receive a second vaccination 4 weeks after the first vaccination.
The protective effect from the vaccination is not the same each year. In the event that a person becomes ill despite the vaccination, the illness is often milder and shorter.
Information and consultancy service
Do you want to protect yourself against the flu? Want to find out more about the flu vaccination? Want to find out whether you fall into one of the at-risk groups?
We would be happy to help you decide which vaccinations are best for you!
Book an appointment onlineor make an appointment on the phone with the City of Vienna vaccination service: Tel. +43 1 / 4000 – 8015