The vaccine is 34 percent effective at preventing the H3N2 strain and offers more protection against the H1N1 strain and B viruses.
More than 1,100 people across Australia died from the flu a year ago, with majority (90 per cent) over the age of 65. More than half of kids who got a flu vaccine this season have avoided the illness.
The flu test was negative, does that mean my child doesn’t have the flu?
Australia was hit hard by the flu in 2017, with a high number of deaths and hospitalizations.
Have you, or someone you know, gotten sick with the flu? Flu season begins in the Southern Hemisphere and then we get a sense of whether the guesswork was accurate. States are not required to report adult deaths. “It’s very sensitive, so for influenza B it’s almost 100-percent sensitive and for influenza A it’s more than 95 percent sensitive so it’s much, much better”, said Dr. Anthony Powell of Menlo Medical Clinic.
She recommends staying home if you feel ill and wash your hands to prevent the spread of germs.
Schaffner characterizes the current vaccine’s efficacy numbers as “not bad”, and reiterates that vaccination helps prevent severe flu even if it isn’t ideal.
But the number of hospitalizations declined statewide for the first time since last December, with 2,409 people being treated in hospitals for the flu. Numbers may change as the season continues and more patients are added to the study.
“It’s still not too late to get vaccinated, as we’re starting to see some increase in Influenza A H1N1 and Influenza B activity”, said Kristen Nordlund, a spokeswoman for the CDC “If you think you have flu or if you are at a high risk for complications from flu, it is important to seek care early”. These include providing some manufacturers with the seed viruses used for further vaccine manufacture and the critical potency reagents needed to ensure that influenza vaccines made by one manufacturer are similar to those made by another. The agency color-codes the severity of the outbreak using a legend of bright green for states with minimal flu activity, rising to deep red for those inundated by the virus. Thus, for egg-based vaccines, the lower-than-desirable efficacy being observed is not likely related to the process of adapting the virus to grow well in eggs.
The people who have contracted the flu this year range in age from 5 months to 99 years old, LaBombard said.