The newest department of health numbers confirm that flu season is here. The nasal spray vaccine that has been available in recent years is no longer considered effective and is not available.
For answers to questions about the flu and the flu vaccine, people can access the CDC website at www.cdc.gov, or contact the Brownwood/Brown County Health Department at 325-646-0554.
Reports of flu in our area are now only sporadic.
Still, McGeer said there's good evidence accumulated over time that getting the flu shot every year "is a safer and healthier thing to do for myself and better for my patients and my family".
But it's not stopping them from urging people to still get the flu shot.
Vermont health officials say we may be in for a rough flu season, and are advising people to get their flu shot to protect both themselves as well as others, such as children too young to be vaccinated.
The flu is spread by "respiratory droplets".
The flu usually comes on suddenly and often with a fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, and headaches. If passed, the legislation would protect healthcare professionals from being fired for refusing a flu shot.
"Anything that you can do to help prevent your family from getting the flu is very beneficial", said Altmann, who was not involved in the CDC research.
Lin, who chaired the meeting, said that doctors have reported that while hepatitis A vaccines have been administered to children older than 12 months, they are not included in subsidies for children's standard vaccinations, which might result in doctors being unable to apply for reimbursement of vaccination costs. The drug works best when taken right when you get sick, so seeing your doctor early is a good move, she said. As part of the series, Joan Mann also discusses how her adult daughter, Kendra, sadly succumbed to the flu at age 35.
"We do see a predominance of the H3N2 virus that was common last season", Flannery said.
"When we measure vaccine effectiveness, that's effectiveness against protecting against disease completely", said Schaffner, who was not involved in the CDC research, though he is a liaison representative of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, which develops recommendations on the use of vaccines for the CDC. Getting vaccinated yourself also protects people around you, including those who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness.