“Yes. Get one,” Ross said in an e-mail. “The vast majority of kids that died from influenza this season were NOT vaccinated.”
The elderly and young children are most vulnerable to the flu. This year, though, it's also proving particularly deadly among older non-elderly adults.
Grady’s decision to keep the mobile unit another month is a reminder that while flu is waning, it still remains a factor in overcrowded hospital emergency waiting rooms. While Grady views the decision to rent the “Carolinas MED-1” unit as a success, keeping it longer will cost Grady an additional $200,000, spokeswoman Denise Simpson said.
This year’s vaccine was not as effective as other years’ partly because the main flu strain this year, H3N2, changes shape quickly to evade immune response. However, when the final analysis of the vaccine’s power came in, it was better than expected, and new U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar made the announcement himself.
“If a young child gets a flu shot, he or she is 59 percent less likely to get the virus and have to go to the doctor,” Azar said in the press conference two weeks ago. That number is a bit better than one-third for adults.
“Go get a flu shot!” Azar said. “Do it for yourself, your family and your community.”
GA FLU TOLL TO DATE
This is the toll the flu has taken in Georgia in the 2017-2018 flu season. It only includes confirmed cases; there may be more.
- Week ending Feb. 17: 91 hospitalizations reported
- Week ending Feb. 17: 19 deaths reported
Source: Georgia Department of Public Health
Your first line of defense is your personal doctor. There are also clinics and, for serious cases, the hospital. Emergency warning signs for people to go to the emergency room include:
- flulike symptoms that improve but return with fever and a worse cough
Source: U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention