The vaccines approved for the next flu season by the FDA is recommended for everyone 6 months old and older.

The flu vaccines, expected to start in the fall, will protect against three strains of influenza, including last year’s pandemic H1N1 swine flu strain, the FDA announced Friday.

Last year, two separate vaccines were needed for seasonal flu and the H1N1 virus because swine flu emerged too late to be included in the seasonal vaccine.

The vaccines for the 2010-11 flu season include killed or weakened forms of the following strains chosen to most likely cause illness by health experts from the World Health Organization, the FDA, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other institutions:

* A/California/7/09 (H1N1)-like virus (pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza virus),
* A/Perth/16/2009 (H3N2)-like virus,
* B/Brisbane/60/2008-like virus.

Type A viruses are the ones with the potential to cause pandemics, because they can undergo major genetic changes suddenly and emerge in forms to which most people have little or no resistance.

In the coming year, people will need only one shot unless viruses undergo major genetic changes suddenly, which can potentially cause pandemics due to little or no resistance in most people for the new form of virus.

The FDA said that in case when viral strains other than those in the coming vaccine is in circulation, the vaccine may help reduce the severity of the illness or help prevent flu-related complications.

“The best way to protect yourself and your family against influenza is to get vaccinated every year," Dr. Karen Midthun, acting director of the FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said in an agency news release. "The availability of a new seasonal influenza vaccine each year is an important tool in the prevention of influenza-related illness and death."

Eight vaccines -- Afluria, Agriflu, Fluarix, FluLaval, FluMist, Fluvirin, Fluzone, and Fluzone High-Dose -- made by six companies have been approved, with the high-dose version for people 65 and older.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expanded its 2010-11 influenza vaccination recommendation to all people over 6 months of age, instead of children and people with underlying health conditions in high-risk groups.