Experts recommend vaccinations at onset of flu season

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Following one of the most severe flu seasons on record last in Washington, the state Department of Health is recommending getting vaccinated now as the illness has already started circulating this year.

The DOH reports almost 300 people in Washington died from the flu and flu-related complications previous year, while thousands of others got sick.

On Monday, October 8th, the White County Health Units of the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) will offer flu vaccinations at both Beebe and Searcy from 8:00 to 4:30.

Because flu is extremely common that not every case is reported and death certificates do not list down flu as a cause, the agency does not have the exact number of people who passed away because of the disease. "The best way to protect yourself, regardless of the effectiveness, is with a flu vaccination", Adams said.

Today's group also put in a plug for vaccination against pneumococcal disease, which can lead to sepsis, a flu complication.

"I would get the vaccine now and you don't have to worry about whether it's a mild or a severe season", said William Schaffner, NFID medical director.

A poll by Insights West, on behalf of London Drugs, shows 78% of British Columbians think it is important to get a flu shot.

- As flu season approaches, CDC officials are emphasizing the importance of the flu vaccine, especially considering the severity of the 2017-2018 flu season.

The flu vaccine is more effective some years than others, because scientists developing each year's vaccine have to guess which strains will take off. Annual flu vaccination is recommended for most adults and children six months and older.

How Does Last Year's Flu Season Compare to Previous Years? That group still had the highest coverage level, at 67.8%; adolescents and teens lagged, at 47.4%.

Though the toll was highest among seniors, the dead included 180 children, "and a majority of them were unvaccinated", Adams says.

Public health officials say that the estimated 80,000 people might still be revised, but not expected to significantly go down.

And for people who don't like needles, the nasal spray vaccine is available this year.

It takes about two weeks to get maximum protection from the flu vaccine.

Laura Riley, MD, professor and chair of the department of obstetrics and gynecology at Weill Cornell Medicine, said in the NFID release that flu vaccination during pregnancy is safe. The "trivalent" vaccine protects against two strains of influenza A and one strain of influenza B. The quadrivalent protects against two influenza A and two influenza B strains. Last winter's flu was particularly active. The findings were based on an Internet survey conducted in March and April.

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