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CDC Warns 2014-2015 Flu Vaccine is only 23 Percent Effective

Posted on February 15, 2016 by Disability Help Group

As we enter the latter half of flu season, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report concerning the most recent status of the spread of the flu virus. According to CDC data, the flu has reached epidemic status with 15 child deaths.

One of the reasons of the high mortality rate may be due to this year’s seasonal flu vaccine being less effective than previous years. The CDC states that the 2014-15 vaccine is only 23 percent effective in reducing individuals’ risks of seeing a doctor for the flu.

Seasonal flu vaccines are effective against the strains of influenza that are most likely to spread during the upcoming season. The CDC estimates that about 70 percent of the season’s H3N2 viruses are drift variants. These are viruses that contain antigenic or genetic changes different from the virus in the flu vaccine. Other seasons have seen flu vaccines that were 50 to 60 percent effective.

Even though the CDC has reported relatively low effectiveness for the vaccine this season, it is still recommending the vaccine. People in high risk categories such as those with compromised immune systems, people over the age of 65, and young children, should especially receive the vaccine. Researchers are collaborating on a universal flu vaccine that unlike the seasonal vaccine, would work against all strains, but that goal is still several years away.

For now, the CDC recommends all people over the age of six months receive a seasonal vaccination. If you know someone is sick, keep your distance when possible and keep your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing. Regular hand washing and keeping your body in top condition with a healthy diet and regular exercise can help boost your immune system to ward off cold and flu viruses.

The Flu Vaccine is Especially Important to Many Disabled Individuals

People who suffer from auto-immune diseases, have compromised immune systems, or are already weakened by a disabling condition should see their doctor to determine if the flu vaccine is a good measure against the flu virus.  If you have a disabling condition that prevents you from working and you believe you are entitled to disability benefits, Disability Help Group is here to help. Call today for help with your case – 1-(800)-800-3332.