Wednesday, 17 October, 2018


CDC: Last Flu Season Was The Deadliest In Four Decades

Tens of thousands of American deaths last winter are believed to have been caused by the flu and its related complications according to government officials making it the most severe in at least four decades Health officials working to make flu shot more effective
Patty Aguilar | 29 September, 2018, 17:41

She explained that last season, unlike previous seasons, flu did not strike one region of the country and then move across the land. "All it takes is getting influenza once, and you have a whole new appreciation of its health importance". Getting a flu vaccine will protect not only you, but also your family and co-workers.

CDC officials don't have an exact measure of the amount of flu-related deaths per year.

Measures introduced by the Health Department past year - which included offering the flu jab in pharmacies and rolling out the nasal vaccine to all primary school children - helped cut the number of reported flu cases by half, and Dr Diggle said she hoped the latest moves would build on that success.

"That's huge", said Dr. William Schaffner, a Vanderbilt University vaccine expert.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone six months and older should be vaccinated for influenza every season, ideally by the end of October.

CDC officials do not have exact counts of how many people die from flu each year. The health department also accepts Medicaid and participates in the Vaccine for Children program.

"Kids have a lot of snot, they have a lot of drool and they go to school", she said over laughter from the audience.

Last year's vaccine was about 40 percent effective, which is on the low side for the vaccination.

"That waning of immunity has not been substantial enough to recommend a delay in the kickoff for getting vaccines", he said.

The vaccine performed better against some strains than others. This means it's best to get the vaccine before flu season begins to have full immune benefits. It was driven by a kind of flu that tends to put more people in the hospital and cause more deaths, particularly among young children and the elderly.

And it has also revealed that Islanders aged 65 and over will received a "turbo-charged" vaccine, while pregnant women and those with long-term health conditions such as diabetes will have a "gold standard" jab that will protect them against four strains of virus. CDC recommends that healthcare providers administer prescription antiviral medication as a second line of defense as soon as possible to patients with confirmed or suspected flu who are hospitalized, have severe illness, or may be at higher risk for flu complications.?

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