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Even flu shots are still effective



Now a new study reveals the benefits of this. Even if the flu shot is only 20% effective, it can reduce US physician visits for illness by an estimated 20 million in a single year, according to the new report published in the PNAS (Science Academy of Sciences) journal States).

In addition, the vaccine can also prevent thousands of hospitalizations and deaths, the study authors estimate based on the average immunization coverage in the United States.

"Being vaccinated against influenza is beneficial to the individual and to the community, even though the vaccine has relatively little efficacy," said Burton H. Singer, co-author of the study and associate professor of emerging Pathogens Institute University of Florida at Gainesville

Due to viruses, influenza is an infectious respiratory disease with mild to severe symptoms that can sometimes lead to death. The flu virus is developing rapidly and new viruses are circulating in different parts of the world, so scientists need to reformulate the vaccine every year. In addition, an incomplete manufacturing process and even a "good match" re formulation may not be as effective as scientists would like.

In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated only 36% efficacy for the seasonal 201
7-18 vaccine as of 3 February. (The season ends in May.)

For the new study, Singer and his colleagues created a mathematical model of influenza vaccination and vaccination to assess how much illness is even prevented by a flu vaccine with very low efficacy. The research team noted that even with the average rate of US care, even a bad vaccine would prevent a significant amount of illnesses, hospital admissions and deaths.

For example, with only 43% coverage (the average rate of Americans who have received a flu shot for the years 2012 through 2017) a vaccine with only 20% efficacy could not avert more than 20 million infections or illnesses Get vaccine. In addition, 129,000 hospital admissions and 61,000 deaths were prevented.

When more people receive flu vaccinations, say half of the US population, the same 20% effective flu vaccine would prevent another 3.63 million infections, 21,987 hospital admissions, and 8,479 deaths.

  Looking Different Next Year

"When a vaccine is fully effective at 50% or more of the vaccinated individuals need it They focus primarily on the vaccination of infants, "said Singer. The reason? Children still build up immunity and they pass on germs at school.

"As vaccine efficacy diminishes, it is becoming increasingly important for older people to be vaccinated in addition to small children," Singer said, as elderly people are more likely to develop complications from the flu, such as pneumonia.

The CDC reported a total of 160 flu-related childhood deaths and 30,064 flu-related hospitalizations between October 1, 2017 and April 21, 2018. The highest rates of hospital admission occurred in adults aged 65 and over.
Richard Webby, a member of the World Health Organization Advisory Board and a member of the Department of Infectious Diseases at the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, said: "The effectiveness estimates are high due to various factors such as match and down from vaccine and circulating stress and probably other factors we do not fully understand. "

" The message from the past couple of seasons is that there is much room for improvement, "said Webby, who was not involved in the research was.

More people, especially older people, still need to get vaccinated even if vaccine efficacy is lower than hoped, Webby said: "This study suggests that even with a less than optimal vaccine, there is still a lot of public health benefits can be achieved if used properly and widely. "


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