CDC: This Year's Flu Vaccine Less Effective - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

CDC: This Year's Flu Vaccine Less Effective

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NATIONWIDE - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said this year's flu vaccine may not be as effective as year's past.

Joanne Sherr is a pharmacist at Apple Discount Drugs in Fruitland, a location many people turn to for their annual flu vaccine.

"The flu vaccine is developed based on the strains that were causing infections in the previous year.  So,  it's a best guess as to what will be causing the flu the following year," said Sherr.

The best guess for the CDC this year was not as accurate as the organization would have hoped.  Of the 85 different flu samples the CDC has collected and tested this flu season, over half of them (52%) were not included in this year's vaccine.  Which raises the question, why not simply come up with another flu vaccine.

But the CDC said it may be too late for that.  Despite all the advances of modern medicine, creating a flu vaccine still typically takes up to four months to complete.  However, despite the fact the vaccine may not be as protective as the CDC and those receiving it would have hoped, that does not mean people should simply skip it this year.

"It covers strains that have been known to cause the infection.  So at least you're covered on those.  If you're not, it just predisposes you from infection from those plus whatever else is out there," said Sherr.

According to the CDC, while the flu vaccine may not be covering all of the different flu strains currently making people sick, the vaccine can help reduce some of the symptoms of another flu strain or even reduce the amount of time you are sick if you do catch the flu bug.

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