"We recommend that all residents, who have not yet received a flu shot, do so now either through their physician, a local pharmacy or at a clinic". Back in 2015-16, Kaweah Delta began requiring all staff to either get a flu vaccination or wear a face mask during cold and flu season. Those most at risk for the flu, according to MDH, include people age 65 and older, young children under 2 years old, pregnant women and individuals with chronic heart conditions, such as asthma, diabetes and heart disease. Now that the new flu season is already underway, the medical community is still urging the unvaccinated members of the public to get immunized.
In 2008, New Jersey's Public Health Council issued a compulsory flu vaccination for all children before entering preschools and daycare centers.
"Unfortunately, over half of all adults are now unvaccinated, with 4 in 10 not intending to get vaccinated, placing themselves and those around them at risk", said Caroline Pearson of the NORC at University of Chicago, also stating that widespread vaccination doesn't just help the individual but protects those who can not get vaccinated through herd immunity.
The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit (WECHU) has observed a higher number of babies and children being reported with influenza this year.
"There were no vaccines to protect against flu virus infection, no antiviral drugs to treat flu illness, and no antibiotics to treat secondary bacterial infections like pneumonia", the CDC said on its website. Early signs are that this coming year might be dominated by the H1N1 strain, for which the flu vaccine tends to have higher effectiveness rates.
Myth: The flu vaccine is only necessary for the old and very young. The best way to prevent the flu is to get the flu vaccine.
Mitchell says because she had never been prone to illness, she didn't get a flu shot.
The mild season is a dramatic shift from the previous flu season, which was the deadliest in decades, with more than 80,000 flu-related deaths in the United States.
Flu vaccines are not 100% effective, and sometimes the strain of flu circulating is not a flawless match for the flu strains in the flu vaccine.
While the vaccine is not ideal, it greatly reduces the chances of getting the flu and lessens the severity should one get ill.
Visit www.ldh.la.gov/fighttheflu for more information and resources.
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