Influenza is Upon Us
National Influenza Week
December 1-7, 2019
Previous flu vaccination coverage data has shown that few people get vaccinated against influenza after the end of November. The Centers for disease control and its partners want to remind people that even though the holiday season has begun, it is not too late to get a flu vaccine. As long as flu viruses are spreading and causing illness, vaccination should continue throughout flu season in order to protect as many people as possible against flu. While vaccination is recommended before the end of October, getting vaccinated later can still be beneficial during most seasons for people who have put it off. If you have already been sick with the flu, you can still benefit form vaccination since many different flu viruses spread during flu season and most flu vaccine protects against four different flu viruses.
The Burden of Flu
Flu isn’t a “bad cold” and can result in serious health complications, such as pneumonia, bacterial infections, and can lead to hospitalization. Flu can sometimes even lead to death.
_Most people who get flu will recover in several days to less than two weeks, but some people
will develop serious flu complications.
_People at high risk of serious flu complications include young children, pregnant women,
people with certain chronic health conditions, and people 65 years of age and older.
_Anyone who gets the flu can pass it to someone at high risk of severe illness, including children
who are too young to get the vaccine, elderly people, and those with certain chronic illness.
Benefits of Flu Vaccination
_The flu vaccine is estimated to prevent 5.3 million influenza illnesses.
_A 2018 study showed that from 2012 to 2015, flu vaccination among adults reduced the risk of
being admitted to an intensive care unit with the flu by 82 percent.
_Studies show that when a pregnant woman is vaccinated, her baby is protected for several
months after birth.
_ Flu vaccination has been shown to reduce severity of illness in people who get vaccinated but
still get sick.
Getting vaccinated yourself may also protect people around you, including those who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, like babies and young children, older people, and people with certain chronic health conditions.