March 1st, 2019
The peak of the 2019 flu season is here, yet it remains milder than last year’s flu season. A total of 48 states have cases of the flu and there has been a total of 20.4 million reported cases of the flu since October of 2018. Many factors attribute to how mild of severe each year’s flu season will be. One of these attributes is the effectiveness of the flu vaccine. According to the CDC, this year’s flu vaccine “reduced the risk of medically attended influenza-related illnesses by almost half (47 percent) in vaccinated people so far this season.” In 2018 it was reported that in comparison the vaccine was only 36 percent effective. The reason for this increase in effectiveness is that the vaccine was formulated to attack four strains, and one of those strains is the predominant cause of this year’s Another reason for this year’s flu season being mild is due to the predominant strain of this year’s flu season, H1N1, which is considered one of the less severe flu strains. This makes this year’s flu symptoms much more manageable than last years. The flu shot is not only meant for preventing the flu altogether, many people who get the flu shot still get the flu at some point, however, those who are vaccinated experience far less severe flu symptoms as well as a shorter flu duration. Therefore, the flu shot is important to ensure optimal health.