GCPH stresses importance of flu vaccine

12 December, 2017, 17:24 | Author: Wilson Dawson
  • GCPH stresses importance of flu vaccine

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), vaccines are less effective when it comes to the H3N2 virus strain, and more effective against H1N1 viruses.

MedExpress pointed to a November 29 perspective published by The New England Journal of Medicine that began: "As clinicians in the United States prepare for the start of another influenza season, experts have been watching the Southern Hemisphere winter for hints of what might be in store for us in the North. Reports from Australia have caused mounting concern, with record-high numbers of laboratory-confirmed influenza notifications and outbreaks and higher-than-average numbers of hospitalizations and deaths".

While so far the vaccine has seemed to be effective here, Shelton said, even if it doesn't stop an individual from getting the flu, it does ease the severity and length of the bout.

"We don't know what's going to happen here", he said.

"Connecticut this week just reported its first case of a death related to influenza in the state, so it certainly can have pretty severe consequences", said UConn Health Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases Dr. Kevin Dieckhaus.

Doctors say what happens in the USA with flu season tends to mirror what happened in the southern hemisphere. "This year in Australia, it looks like it's about 10 percent".

The four most deadly flu seasons of the last 10 years - in the winters of 2003-2004, 2007-2008, 2012-2013, and 2014-15 - were H3N2 seasons, each with a particular version of that flu type.


This flu season is beginning earlier than the previous couple of years, which had unusually late starts.

"Last year, we didn't see anything until nearly January and February".

It's recommended for most everyone six months and older.

Dr John Rodriguez, Public Health Screening and Immunisation lead for Kent and Medway said: "It is important we protect young children from the flu virus and get them vaccinated now".

Flu numbers across the metro are seeing a spike, thanks in part to this year's flu vaccine simply not being as effective as in years past.

Today, H1N1 simply is one of many flu strains that are tracked, and like the others, causes the usual flu symptoms and reappears every so often. When your immune system kicks into gear making antibodies, your body's natural response can involve fatigue, soreness and even mild fever. It takes roughly two weeks for the body to develop antibodies after the vaccine is administered, health officials say. This will also prevent you from infecting other people.

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