Flu Season Expected To be Harsher This Year

Flu Season Expected To be Harsher This Year

Some experts say this year's flu shot might not prevent the illness for nine out of 10 people.

"They have a less tropical climate, one that's more like ours", Patel said in a news release.

"Our flu season started early this year", explained the Pima County Health Department's Deputy Director, Paula Mandel.

However, doctors insist we can not underestimate the importance of "herd immunity", and that the shot may be more effective as lessening illness in those who do get sick. Previous year alone, the CDC estimated that the vaccine prevented 5.1 million flu illnesses.

The numbers show this is already a more active flu season.

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Since September, there have been 106 lab-confirmed flu cases in the province, two intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and two outbreaks in long-term care facilities (LTC). The 57 confirmed cases of influenza only account for about 5 percent of the 1,064 tests administered so far this season.

What's more, American vaccine manufacturers look at the strain hitting Australia when producing the vaccines for the US, but that strain can mutate within the six to eight months the USA industry needs to produce the vaccines. "Typically, we don't see flu starting to arrive in Pima County until February or March". By the end of last week, seven states reported widespread flu activity: Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Virginia. This report also includes granular analysis of the market share, geographic regions and revenue forecasts and of the North America Flu Vaccine market. "Whenever we have a season that's predominately H3N2, we tend to have more outbreaks".

"The strain that's been detected as the primary circuiting strain of flu virus can cause more severe illness than some of the other strains", Wiese said.

The vaccine's effectiveness can vary based on what virus strains are in circulation, both doctors admitted, but say it's still better than nothing. The other half of the equation is the public's civic duty to help protect one another by getting the flu vaccination even if you don't think you need it. Instead, the flu vaccine acts by allowing your immune system to create the ability to fight the flu in case you are exposed. Rigler said it takes about two weeks for the body to react to the killed virus in the vaccine to build up an immunity.

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