Still Not too Late to Fight the Flu!
Wednesday February 20, 2019
Did you get your flu shot this year? We’re right in the midst of flu season, so if you haven’t gotten it yet, the Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency is reminding you that it is not too late!
“An annual seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to help protect against flu,” says Yvonne Atwood, Director of Personal Health and Disease Prevention. “Vaccination has been shown to have many benefits including reducing the risk of flu illnesses, hospitalizations and even the risk of flu-related death in children.”In 2017-18, estimates indicatethat the 17-18 flu season had the highest morbidity and mortality since the 2009-10 influenza pandemic:
- ~49 million illnesses
- ~960,000 hospitalizations
- ~79,000 influenza-associated deaths
Reports estimate 42% of the U.S population was vaccinated against influenza during the 2017-18 season.
Still need a little more convincing to get your shot? Take a look at some of the most up-to-date data released by the CDC and the U.S Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness (Flu VE) Network:
- This year’s vaccine is estimated to be 47% effective against all flu infections, and
- for children aged 6 months–17 years, it is 61% effective, and
- agains tinfluenza A (H1N1, the current predominate strain), this year’s vaccine is approximately 46% effective.
- During the 2017-18 flu season influenza vaccine was estimated to prevent:
- 7 million illnesses
- 109,000 hospitalizations
- 8,000 deaths
These results suggest that influenza vaccines provide a substantial benefit to prevent illness and death during a high-severity influenza season. “Flu vaccines cause antibodies to develop in the body about two weeks after vaccination. These antibodies provide protection against infection with the viruses that are in the vaccine,” says Atwood. Ready to schedule your appointment for a flu shot? Call your local health department and get it now!
Monday 517-279-9561 ext. 100
Wednesday 517-437-7395 ext. 336
St. Joseph County
Tuesday 269-273-2161 ext. 208