Things to Know About the Flu Season This Spring

Ray Weaver
April 5, 2018

"The flu is more severe this year because it is not the typical mild strain we normally experience", said Gary L. Kreps, Ph.D., director, Center for Health and Risk Communication at George Mason University.

What is the flu vaccine?

Schaffner said there's a rush toward quadrivalent recombinant flu vaccines by drug developers to help cover a wider variety of flu strains.

How does the vaccine work?

The two stronger vaccines available for the older demographic both exclude the Brisbane-like flu strain. "But then after two days I finally crawled myself out of bed and got myself to the GP", the father of three said.

While the CDC reports that this flu season has been more severe than in recent years, the duration of the season is similar to seasons past.

"There wasn't the predominate expectation that everyone got a flu shot".

Yes, because the strains of flu viruses can change from year to year. We thought, like many people, that the flu was very much like a severe cold, and that flu shots were for those who were six months to two-and-a-half years old and 75 and older. "Even if the flu strains in the vaccine do not change, yearly vaccination is still recommended, as protection from flu vaccination is not long-lasting". Can I still get the vaccine?

An uptick in influenza B at the end of an already turbulent flu season has some anxious about a second wave of the disease. "Sometimes it doesn't make you quite as sick as Influenza A. But it's still something to be concerned about", said Ranta.

Are certain groups more vulnerable if they don't get the vaccine?

"In addition to flu vaccination to prevent illness, the health district also recommends frequent hand washing with warm water and soap, covering coughs and sneezes, and staying home if sick".

How effective is the vaccine?

Of those who died, 90 percent were aged over 65, pushing scientists like Professor Dominic Dwyer from NSW Health Pathology to boost the strength of the vaccines they produce this year. "Even if the vaccine's not foolproof, there's no reason to take a chance".

The standard influenza vaccine now only protects against three different strains of flu: two A and one B.

Other reports by Insurance News

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