Haverhill 1st grader MA first child flu death of season

With widespread flu activity reported in 49 states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say a vaccination is the best way to prevent influenza. The CDC report found that the current vaccine is 67 percent effective against the other influenza A strain, H1N1, and 42 percent effective against influenza B viruses.

That's better than initial reports from Australia and Canada had indicated.

The CDC said that the overall effectiveness of this year's vaccine is 36 percent.

"CDC continues to recommend influenza vaccination while influenza viruses are circulating in the community; several more weeks of influenza activity are likely", it said.

Even though the flu vaccine has low effectiveness against H3N2 viruses, it is more effective against other flu viruses, Schuchat said.

As many as 646,000 people are dying globally from seasonal influenza each year, US health officials said in December, a rise from earlier assessments of the disease's death toll.

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"For the 2017-2018 season, manufacturers projected they would provide between 151 million and 166 million doses of injectable vaccine for the USA market". Hospitals in Fauquier and Prince William counties are reporting higher numbers of the illness compared to previous year. As in past winter flu seasons, about three out of four children who have died were not fully vaccinated, officials said. Nash UNC Health Care on Monday reported that the hospital's Emergency Department has now treated 645 patients for flu since the beginning of the year, with the number of cases being seen daily still on the rise. That data will come later.

"This is a tragic reminder of how serious the flu can be for some people, " said Public Health Commissioner Dr. Monica Bharel. "But now we're seeing a surge in influenza B, so we're not sure what that's attributed to".

Doctors Report ranked the D.C. area at number eight in the top metropolitan areas affected by influenza this year and number 10 for the Influenza A, another strain.

Plus, there are different formulations.

Hensley's work has shown that the way most flu vaccine is manufactured in this country, which involves using chicken eggs as a growing medium, creates changes in vaccines for H3N2 that make them less effective. They discovered that in the young, more immune cells called monocytes were recruited to the lungs, and that the gene expression profiles of these cells had more inflammatory features, causing greater inflammation and more severe lung injury.

"We don't take any chances and if anyone has been exposed to the illness, we encourage them to wear a mask while at the facility", she said.

  • Joanne Flowers