This position paper is concerned with vaccines and vaccination against seasonal (epidemic) influenza. In recent years, there have been important developments in the field of influenza vaccines, e.g. new data have emerged on the epidemiology of influenza in developing and tropical countries, quadrivalent influenza vaccines (QIVs) have been introduced and new vaccine technologies have been developed, including the use of cell culture, recombinant protein vaccines and adjuvanted and high-dose vaccines for use in older adults. In addition, reviews have been published of the consequences of influenza virus infection in certain population groups and of the impact of repeat influenza vaccinations on vaccine effectiveness (VE). This document replaces the 2012 WHO position paper on influenza vaccines.

Recommendations on the use of influenza vaccines were discussed by SAGE at its meeting in October 2021. Evidence presented at these meetings can be accessed at https://www.who.int/news-room/events/detail/2021/10/04/default-calendar/sage_meeting_october_2021.

The recommendations in this position paper apply only to seasonal influenza vaccination. WHO will issue other specific recommendations in relation to pandemic influenza.

  • Position paper
  • Influenza