Repeat flu vaccinations don’t hurt kids and might help boost immunity, study finds

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By Maggie Fox

Getting repeated flu vaccines year after year doesn’t reduce their effectiveness in children and, in fact, may boost immunity against some influenza strains, researchers reported Friday.

Their findings, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, should reassure parents and doctors worried after reports suggested getting vaccines every year might reduce immunity.

The new study of more than 3,000 children found that kids who were vaccinated every year were less likely to get flu than unvaccinated kids. The multiple vaccinations tended to boost protection against one common flu strain: influenza B.

“In no case was repeated vaccination associated with lower effectiveness than vaccination in the current season only,” Sarah Cobey, who studies the body’s immune response to germs at the University of Chicago, wrote in a commentary.