You may be at an increased risk of developing the flu this season even if you have been vaccinated. A study that was recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that this year’s flu vaccine is only 10 percent effective. Health experts used the flu statistics in Australia in order to measure the effectiveness of the vaccine. Australia had a bad flu season. Hospitalization and deaths were much higher than the national average.
It is estimated that 140,000 to 710,000 people in the United States are hospitalized due to the flu. Approximately 12,000 to 56,000 people die from the flu each year. Anyone can die from the flu. Infants, the elderly and people with preexisting medical conditions are at an even greater risk of dying from the flu.
Flu vaccines are developed a few months before the next flu season begins. A team of researchers from the World Health Organization meet in order to identify the strains of flu that they believe will infect most people. The average flu vaccine is anywhere from 40 to 60 percent effective. However, this year’s flu vaccine is only 10 percent effective.
Even though this year’s flu vaccine is not that effective, health experts still recommend that people get one. A flu vaccine can still reduce the severity of the flu. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention helped save 40,000 lives between 2005 and 2014.
In addition to getting the flu shot, there are some other things that you can do in order to reduce your risk of contracting the flu. You will need to make sure that you wash your hands regularly. You will also need to avoid touching your eyes, mouth and face. Additionally, taking care of your overall health by eating right and exercising can help you avoid the flu.