The majority of people hit by the flu this season will recover; however, hundreds of thousands of others won't be as lucky. The estimate also took into account several recent respiratory mortality studies, including one published in the Lancet on Thursday by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The report states that influenza A (H3N2) viruses are predominant in the Southern Hemisphere, and a preliminary estimate showed the vaccine as only 10 percent effective against that strain. The other two states seeing high influenza volumes are MS and Louisiana.
Despite this guidance, fewer than half of Americans have received a jab this season.
In addition, you should clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces often, especially if someone is sick.
Symptoms of influenza include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Most people recover in less than two weeks.
Many mothers-to-be, though, have not heeded this advice. But many pharmacies now offer them, too. You should inform your doctor when you have been vaccinated. Extremely rare severe allergic reactions can also occur, according to the CDC. "Health care personnel are routinely exposed to sick patients and come in close contact with patients who are most vulnerable to influenza, such as the elderly". Dr. Wallace said this is the best precautionary message for schools.
The CDC is working hard to address this global problem by strengthening global flu surveillance.
"And so they kind of doubled and kept escalating until February 25, 2016", she said.
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"Everybody's risk is different", Schwartz said.
Since October 1, Christian Hospital has seen at least 91 patients with Influenza A and 11 patients with Influenza B. At least a dozen patients were hospitalized.
And the vaccine is no guarantee of protection.
"The highest number of flu-related hospitalizations has occurred among those who are older than 50 years of age, as well as children younger than 5, which are both groups at greater risk of experiencing severe illness and complications due to flu", the health department said in a statement on November 30. The article's authors also noted that "the vaccine prevented about a third of all illness by all of the types of flu", Flannery said. Some 39.8 percent were vaccinated at this time last season.
"We do see a predominance of the H3N2 virus that was common last season", Flannery said. More than 600 required hospitalization.
And despite some concerns about the overall effectiveness of this year's immunization, it's still the best way to protect yourself, experts agree. There have been 179 total hospitalizations in Oklahoma.
Who should receive the flu shot?
Cases of flu and related illnesses have been reported as widespread in MA based on geographical cases in recent weeks.
The bulk of cases were in Fairfield County, which had 49 people test positive for the flu. "That's a concern", Flannery said.