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12 December 2017, 06:04 | Violet Powell
You keep hearing it's time to get your flu shot. But new research shows this year's vaccine isn't as effective as last year's
"They have a less tropical climate, one that's more like ours", Patel said in a news release. "The Centers for Disease Control can not catch each and every flu strain, and this one was unknown at the time".
Patel said it is never too late to receive a flu shot, especially since so far this year, it looks like the flu shot serum that was projected ahead of time is turning out to be right on target. In a good year, people who get vaccinated are 60% less likely to get sick, but in most recent years, the protection has been worse. USA flu vaccines are created to fight the same strain of the virus that spreads during the Australian flu season.
Steven O'Marro, an infection preventionist, says despite possibly being less effective, the flu shot still serves a objective. But in light of the spike and flu cases this year, how close are they?
Flu season has arrived earlier than it did past year - just in time for the holidays - and health officials are concerned that this season could bring a severe outbreak. And that last season, Rigler continued, lasted unusually long, into the summer months, with 100 or more cases a week into June and July. "Typically, we don't see flu starting to arrive in Pima County until February or March".
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Richard Webby, PhD, is a member of the infectious disease department at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and one of a select group of scientists responsible for determining which flu vaccines will be put into circulation each year. "It mutates as it goes from person to person, that's why it's so hard to predict what season we'll have".
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 year, some experts claim the flu shot may only be 10 percent effective. And those projections come from what happened during the previous flu season in North America, along with what is happening in other continents around the world. Now circulating viruses seem not to have undergone significant antigenic drift; circulating A (H3N2) viruses are antigenically less similar to egg-grown A (H3N2) viruses used for most U.S. influenza vaccine production.
There are many varieties of the flu vaccine. Vaccinations are also about protecting others.
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