It’s January: Is it too late to get a flu shot?

High flu activity reported by hospital

Children are particularly susceptible to influenza B/Victoria.

Even though the flu season is in full swing, with data showing that Staten Island is seeing a surge in new cases, experts say that the vaccine may still be the best way to fight the illness. That means if your child is exposed to B/Victoria, there's a 58% chance that their flu shot will be well matched to protect against it. If you're interested in getting the flu shot, there are free vaccines available at most local health departments. Bradley said one simple act can help people protect themselves from getting sick. The flu vaccine is reportedly only a 34% match with influenza A H3N2 viruses-but that strand isn't much of a concern, since it only represents a small percentage of total viruses.

"If there's a strain that begins to circulate in the community that's new, that won't be covered by the vaccine", said Dr. John Bradley, chief of infectious disease at Rady Children's Hospital.

The Centers for Disease Control have sent out a warning about a new strain of flu that current vaccines may not be effective against.

Scientists try to match the vaccine to what is making people sick, but it's hard. But to some extent, it's a bit of a guessing game.

Luckily, this year's flu vaccine is a 100% match with H1N1, which has accounted for about 82% of the influenza A out there.

You can view a weekly flu report from this season from the ADH by following this link.

Fauci is spearheading an effort to develop a universal flu vaccine that would theoretically cover every strain of the flu over multiple flu seasons.



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