Your Health: Fighting the Flu
Published December 12th, 2013
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Researchers from the Centers for Disease control claim that last year's flu vaccination prevented an estimated 6.6 million illnesses and more than 79,000 hospitalizations.
Doctors expect this flu season to be a relatively average year, but they say, as always, you should be taking advantage of this year's flu vaccine.
Experts say getting this year's vaccine is especially important, because it's more effective than ever before.
Here in florida the CDC is reporting we're already seeing regional activity, with a typical season expected to peak between January and March.
So what if you haven't gotten this year's flu shot?
Dr. Sanjeev Tuli says you can prevent the flu year-round.
"It's never too late, it's reccommended for us to offer the vaccine and for people to get the vaccine as late as May or June," Tuli says.
He says fighting the flu is an ongoing battle, but with new technology the fight is perhaps becoming more efficient.
In the past, the trivalent flu vaccine has only been able to protect against three strains of the virus. Now for the first time ever, scientists have managed to create quadrivalent vaccines, protecting agaisnt four different strains.
"They have two A strains and two B strains so the probability that we'll have a better match is much higher this year," Tuli says.
There's always a chance you could still get the flu, but the vaccine is the best way to protect not only yourself... but those around you.
"The young, very old, and those with a chronic disease are the most at risk for getting sicker from the flu and going to the emergency room or dying from flu," he says.
A reminder of why it's always important - and never too late - to vaccinate.
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