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Vaccines now available as flu season nears

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A heavy flu season is being forecast by the NHS

More than 98,000 cases of flu have been reported in Australia this season with scores of deaths, including an eight-year-old girl last week.

"Getting vaccinated later, however, can still be beneficial and vaccination should continue to be offered throughout the flu season, even into January or later", CDC said. Call Public Health at 789-9203 with any questions about flu and the flu vaccine.

Dr. Kim Volz, who teaches residents that end up practicing in IN and Kentucky, says anyone can get the flu, but the really young and really old are at the most risk of getting seriously sick.

One bit of bad news for kids and parents - the Flu Mist nasal spray vaccine won't be available again this year, because CDC and other groups are still trying to figure out why it seemed to have been ineffective in protecting kids in recent flu seasons in the U.S.

As it takes approximately two weeks following vaccination to develop maximum protection against flu, it is important to get vaccinated early.

You may have been surprised, and maybe a little dismayed to see signs up at pharmacies already advertising flu vaccine; a sure sign that summer is waning and winter's not too far around the corner.

The single best way to prevent the flu is for individuals, ages 6 months and older, to get vaccinated each fall, according to a health department press release.

Each year in the US, flu causes millions of illnesses, hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations and thousands of deaths.

"What it does show us is that we have a horror flu season on our hands".

The flu shot vaccine protects between 50 and 60 percent of the population on average. Flu vaccinations can reduce flu illnesses, doctors' visits, and missed work and school days.

Each year the World Health Organization (WHO) reviews the circulating strains of flu and recommends which flu strains should go in the vaccine, Cosford added. For people without insurance, the Vaccines For Adults/Children (VFA and VFC) programs are available to assist those that are unable to pay. "Vaccines are the best defence we have against flu".

Flu symptoms include: sore throat, headaches, fever, body aches, runny nose, and the chills.

The high-dose flu vaccine used to treat elderly people could help middle-aged adults with chronic health conditions such as heart disease, according to research from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

"The recommendation for vaccination of pregnant women against influenza has not changed", Chief Medical Officer Dr. Mary McIntyre said.

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