As ACSH's Ana Dolaskie approaches the final weeks of pregnancy, she is making sure all her vaccinations are up-to-date. This includes the TDAP vaccine (Tetanus-Diphtheria-Pertussis) and influenza shot. And she also wants to makes sure dads, partners, and others who are spending time with baby understand why getting vaccinated is key in protecting a newborn baby against potentially life-threatening illnesses, like pertussis (whooping cough).
There have been some remarkable advances in medicine over the past two decades. HIV infection is no longer a death sentence. Hepatitis C is now readily curable. There is now a vaccine to prevent cervical cancer one of only two cancer vaccines in existence. Targeted approaches to cancer, as well as the use of genetic information for personalizing therapies for individual patients have the potential to completely change the way that cancer and maybe other diseases are treated. But, science is unpredictable. There are still diseases that simply won t yield, despite the huge amount of research that is thrown at them. Influenza is one of them.
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Flu season is considered to begin in October and last until as late as May. However, the peak of flu season does not usually occur until January or February. According to the United States influenza surveillance system, a
Flu season is here, and once again the question arises as to whether or not flu vaccinations should be mandatory for health care workers. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommends that all healthcare workers get the vaccination in order to protect both themselves and the patients with whom they
According to Dr. Mark Grabowsky, of the Office of the (UN) Secretary General s Special Envoy, referring to the dramatic reduction in contagious diseases over the past century, The elimination of the diseases from the Americas is a triumph of public health. And how do we explain that triumph? It s
A new high-dose vaccine against the flu shows evidence of significantly enhanced efficacy for older people. If the CDC vaccine committee agrees, it will become part of the routine program for seniors, and many lives may be saved.
Several societies concerned with countering the spread of infectious diseases issued a call for mandatory immunization of all healthcare workers. They outlined their reasons, but those are quite obvious and this mandate is long overdue, as we here at ACSH have been saying for years.
Flu vaccine still under-utilized, safe, and somewhat effective. CDC estimates millions of serious illnesses have been averted by the shot (and thousands of deaths). Pregnant women remain fearful, but they and their newborns pay the price if their physicians are negligent in not urging them to get vaccinated.
This week, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the CDC, state and local health departments and other health agencies are observing National Influenza Vaccination Week. This includes
There have been concerns about the efficacy of vaccinating the very old against the flu especially debilitated folks who dwell in nursing homes because their immune systems may not respond to the vaccine.
Last year s flu season raised more controversy than usual about the use and utility of the flu vaccine. The degree of protection (about 60%) was on the low side, leading many to question whether it was even worth being vaccinated. Another related question that arose was whether more is better. In other words, if one dose gives moderate protection, would doubling the dose provide more? What about a fourfold increased dose?