These are the 10 most obese states in the US, report finds
Is your state one in the top (or bottom) 10?
With flu season around the corner, topofficials doubled down on the importance of getting a .
"Flu is unpredictable but we can predict that it will arrive," Dr. Bill Schaffner, medical director of the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID), said at a news conference Thursday.
Schaffner stressed that all Americans older than 6 months of age get vaccinated annually against the disease, including this year. For vulnerable populations like pregnant women, young children, older adults and people with chronic health conditions, getting vaccinated is especially critical.
Death rates increasing for U.S. adults aged 25 to 44: CDC
Death rates for young and middle-aged U.S. adults are on the rise, according to research from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
While many Americans brush off the disease because it's so common, contracting the flu can be serious. Nearlyand 960,000 were hospitalized due to the flu during the 2017-18 flu season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Unless we prioritize vaccination, "vaccine preventable diseases will persist in the United States," Schaffner said.
Indeed, thelisted both a global flu pandemic and vaccine hesitancy among the top 10 threats to global health in 2019.
Schaffner cited a survey the NFID conducted this summer on Americans' attitudes about the flu vaccine, which found that while 60% of adults believe that getting a flu vaccine is the best defense against flu-related hospitalization or death, only half of Americans plan to get the vaccine this year.
New study finds children don't like nature as much as you think they do
New US research has found that children might not have an inherent love of nature like we think they do, but a preference for a natural environment appears to develop over time.
Even fewer Americans follow through on that plan. During the 2017-2018 season, roughly 40% of U.S. adults got a flu vaccine,. Rates among children among children are higher, with 63% of children receiving a flu vaccine last season.
Regardless of that higher rate, there were still 135 pediatric deaths related to the flu last season, Dr. Patricia Whitley-Williams, NFID's president elect, said at the news conference.
"Sixty-three percent is not acceptable," said Whitley-Williams, who is a pediatrician. "We can do better."
Many Americans wrongly believe that the flu vaccine does not work or has side effects. Outside of soreness at the side of the injection, the vaccine does not carry any notable side effects, Schaffner said.
While the flu vaccine certainly isn't perfect -- last year for example, it was more effective against the flu at the beginning of flu season than it was against April's flu strains -- Schaffner emphasized the importance of partial protection.
CDC recommends changes to pneumonia vaccine policy
The CDC is recommending that the decision for a patient to receive one of the vaccines for pneumococcal disease be left to doctors and patients.
Even if you get the flu after having received the vaccine, you still benefit from having a less severe and shorter illness, he explained. You're also less likely "to have complications like pneumonia, hospitalization and dying," Schaffner said.
The public health experts also wanted to lead by example. After the conference wrapped, Alex Azar, secretary of health and human services, and Mark May, a former Washington Redskins received flu vaccines onsite.
Tulsie N. Patel, MD, is a chief resident in psychiatry in Dallas, Texas. She is working with the ABC News Medical Unit.
Gallery: 15 Simple Ways to Fend Off Colds and Flu (Provided by Cheapism)
The flu epidemic is now raging in all regions
Several weeks behind previous years, influenza viruses are now present in all metropolitan areas.
The flu is there: all the metropolitan areas are now in epidemic, said Wednesday the health agency. The West Indies are in the pre-epidemic phase. This year, two viral strains circulate mainly: the A (H1N1) virus and the A (H3N2) virus. The influenza vaccine developed for this winter protects against these two viruses.
Of the patients who presented to the flu-like emergency department last week, more than a thousand were hospitalized, nearly 400 more than the previous week. These hospitalizations mainly concern people over 75 (39%) and children under 5 (20%).
In the city, the ILI consultation rate is also "rising sharply": it went from 223 per 100,000 inhabitants to 339 per 100,000 last week, according to estimates from the Sentinel surveillance network.
422 serious cases since November
The health agency reported an "all-cause excess mortality observed among people aged 15-64 and 85 or older" in the first two weeks of January. She points out, however, that the first estimates of the number of deaths attributable to influenza will only be available in the coming weeks. Since 1 November, 422 serious cases of influenza (including 92 last week) have been admitted to intensive care. Of these, 33 deaths were recorded, all in adults, especially those aged 65 and over (22 of 33).
In addition, the Sentinelles network indicates that 5600 people are involved in the surveillance of influenza in the general population via the site. Volunteers "can register at any time (no need to be sick)," he says.
Public Health France recalls actions to be taken to limit the spread of winter viruses: sneeze into the elbow, wash hands frequently, use a disposable tissue and wear a disposable mask when presenting with flu-like symptoms, especially when in contact frail people (elderly, immunocompromised, young children, pregnant women).
"Vaccination is the best way to protect yourself from the flu and its complications," says the agency, adding that a delay of fifteen days after the injection is needed to be protected.
Is There a Shortage of the High-Dose Flu Shot? .
There have been reports that some people are having trouble finding the version of the flu vaccine specially formulated for people 65 and older.A variety of news outlets have reported that some people are having trouble finding Fluzone High-Dose, the version of the flu vaccine that is specially formulated to produce a more robust immune response in people 65 and older.