The government has announced plans to offer a flu vaccination to children aged between 2 and 17 at a cost of £100million per year. But could such a large amount of money be better spent elsewhere?
Flu is certainly a problem, particularly to older people in our society, and it is argued that immunising young people will benefit the wider population as less people would catch the illness, which is responsible for thousands of deaths every year in the UK. Few people question vaccines for diseases such as rubella, so why question this one?
Well, besides a flu vaccine being (arguably) less important as the ones young people currently receive, the money could be better spent. It could be used to improve the NHS, pay for thousands more nurses or encourage people to improve their lifestyles.
By getting children outside in the fresh air, eating healthier food and being more active, children would be less susceptible to illnesses such as flu in the first place. So, if something like this could be achieved, would the flu vaccine really be needed?