'Flu-pocalypse' Predicted Due To Ineffective Flu Shots, Doctors Say

Flu-pocalypse? Doctors brace for devastating flu season due to ineffective flu shots

First flu-related death of the season hits Edmonton

A mismatched flu vaccine can still lower the risk of contracting influenza. Second, the recommendation to NOT use the nasal spray vaccine has been renewed this year - only injectable flu shots should be used for all populations.

The figure below shows peak flu activity for the United States by month for the 1982-1983 through 2015-2016 flu seasons.

Flu season is underway, and health officials say there are signs the vaccination may only be 10 percent effective against the main strain. That is about the same number of students who received vaccines past year and slightly less than 25 percent of the student body. 'Vaccines remain a valuable public health tool, and it is always better to get vaccinated than not to get vaccinated'.

Even worse, it appears the dominant strain will be H3N2, which can produce more severe illness, said Schaffner, an infectious disease specialist at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Previous year saw 231,354 doses of vaccine taken.

Flu is most risky for people over age 65, young children, pregnant women and people with certain health conditions such as asthma or heart disease. However, while vaccinated people can still get sick, generally they get a milder and less risky form of the illness.

"They did observe in Australia that the vaccine didn't work very well", Dr. Neil Rau said. Last year, the state had 15 flu-related deaths, most among the elderly.

CDC recommends that people get a flu vaccine by the end of October, if possible.

For Calgary's Laura Hampton, any protection against the flu is good protection when it comes to her one-year-old son Jack. "In fact, it's a great time to get a shot before the flu season takes off".

Two vaccine brands target the 65-and-older crowd.

And for those anxious about allergies from eggs used in the production process, two more vaccines are egg-free. "With Christmas coming up, lots of people have other things on their mind, so it's a good idea to get it done before you get caught up in the holidays".

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