Flu-related deaths higher than previously reported

Up to 650 000 people die of respiratory diseases linked to seasonal flu each year

Paulina Rodriquez, infection control practitioner at Abilene Regional Medical Center, said that cases are tracking similarly to past year.

"The flu season is going to happen", Winter said.

With flu season upon us, along comes a troubling article in The New England Journal of Medicine.

"Unfortunately, it's the one strain that the vaccine is really underperforming in, in every regard", he said. "Wash your hands, cover your mouth when you cough", Winter said.

Getting your flu shot can also contribute to "herd immunity" - less cases of the flu overall means more protection for the most vulnerable people in the population: the elderly, children, and individuals with certain allergies who can't get the vaccine.

"Most of the flu in the community comes from elementary school-aged kids, that's why we recommend they get flu shots", she said. Please take the precautions to protect yourself and your family, and make an appointment with our health center if you are affected by the flu.

Influenza is a serious illness that can cause mild to severe symptoms and lead to hospitalization or even death.

"Over the past decade, influenza and pneumonia have been associated with an average of 3,500 deaths a year in IL". The previous estimate was 250,000 to 500,000.

"Obviously it's not 100 percent, and you know this year the effectiveness is not where we want it to be but it's still better than zero", said Haman.

The CDC notes that the 10 percent figure is an Australian interim estimate of the vaccine's benefit against one flu virus - the H3N2 virus - that circulated in Australia during its most recent flu season.

Most importantly, a flu shot won't ever give you the flu, since the virus that's injected is not live.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, researchers and global health partners calculated age-specific death estimates for people younger than 65 years, between 65 and 74, and people over the age of 74.

As a result of the season, Good Shepherd has adjusted its visiting guidelines. Eleven (11) of them are still on admission - five at the Kumasi South, three at KNUST hospital, two at Manhyia and one at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH).

Eastern Mediterranean and Southeast Asian countries had slightly lower but still high rates of flu-associated respiratory deaths, the researchers said.

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