ATLANTA — The flu vaccine turned out to be a big disappointment again.

The vaccine didn’t work against a flu bug that popped up halfway through the past flu season, dragging down overall effectiveness to 29%, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Thursday.

The flu shot was working well early in the season with effectiveness put at 47% in February. But it was virtually worthless during a second wave driven by a tougher strain, at just 9%.

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There was “no significant protection” against that strain, said the CDC’s Brendan Flannery.

Flu vaccines are made each year to protect against three or four different kinds of flu virus. The ingredients are based on predictions of what strains will make people sick the following winter.

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This season’s shot turned out to be a mismatch against the bug that showed up late.

That pushed down the overall effectiveness to one of the lowest in recent years. Since 2011, the only season with a lower estimate was the winter of 2014-2015, when effectiveness was 19%. A mismatch was also blamed then.

Vaccines against some other infectious diseases are not considered successful unless they are at least 90% effective. But flu is particularly challenging, partly because the virus can so quickly change. Overall, flu vaccine has averaged around 40%.

Flu shots are recommended for virtually all Americans age 6 months or older. Officials say the vaccine is still worthwhile since it works against some strains, and it likely prevented 40,000 to 90,000 hospitalizations over the winter flu season.

The CDC bases vaccine effectiveness on preventing cases bad enough to send someone to the doctor.

— Mike Stobbe

  • I have evidence of 3 immunograms. There t-cells are greatly exceeded. Researchers in Australia said that “killer T-cells”, found in more than half of the world’s population, showed that they were effective in testing against all common types of flu.

  • It is not possible to create a vaccine against influenza that would cover each individual strain or mutation. In Bolivia, the H1N1 flu virus has mutated into a deadly form. For 4 years, only 1 time he had the flu . And he had the flu for 3 days. You can make a vaccine out of my blood in a few days.

  • No es posible crear una vacuna contra la influenza que cubra cada cepa o mutación individual. En Bolivia, la cepa H1N1 mutada y qué harás. Durante 4 años, solo una vez tuvo gripe . Y tuvo gripe durante 3 días. Puedo crear una vacuna a partir de mi sangre en pocos días.

  • I am amazed at the number of “experts” on here touting how it is better to not get vaccinated. Influenza can basically be broken down into two different types, A or B. Among those types are various strains. Common strains that we see every year as well as mutations of those strains. It is impossible to create a vaccine for influenza that will provide coverage for every single strain or mutation.
    But, with every vaccination you get, you are better protected. People who regularly get their annual Influenza vaccine are less likely to contract the virus. Not completely immune, but less likely.
    Any vaccine you get has an impact on the immune system. Your body attacks this foreign substance and starts developing antibodies. It just so happens that flu season corresponds with cold season. Those people who claim that they get the flu from the shot are greatly misinformed. Did you get polio or tetanus after receiving those vaccines? Unless you specifically went to the doctor and tested positive via laboratory testing, then you more than likely did not have the flu, and were just sick.
    Educate yourselves people. Vaccines save lives. It is this kind of misinformation that has resulted in the increase of “anti-vaxers”.

    • I’m a believer in Vaccines. We’ve had remarkable success with Polio, Small Pox, DPT, and Pneumonia Vaccines.
      These Viruses don’t mutate as rapidly as flu viruses. Which explains the low success rate of Flu Vaccines. Vaccinations for Flu should never be mandatory Tom.

  • I enter the risk group. 2 times a day every day I go to the mosque. I go to the hospital at least once a month to get a prescription for medicine. But I go to the hospital 5 times a month and communicate with the deputy head doctor of the PJSC Tatneft hospital. Researchers in Australia said that “killer T-cells”, found in more than half of the world’s population, showed that they were effective in testing against all common types of flu. I have t-cells significantly exceeded t-helper cells 1808 at a rate of 450-850, t-cytotoxic 945 at a rate of 270-540, T-lymphocytes 2835 at a rate of 600-2500, lymphocytes 4108 at a rate of 800-3600 and leukocytes 7900 at a rate of 4500 -8500. On the advice of a local immunologist, he made another immunogram after 20 days, the results are similar. A local immunologist said lymphocytosis as a result of t-cell activity. I am the most healthy sick person with two rare internal incurable diseases. For 4 years, only 1 time had the flu and. And had the flu for 3 days
    The vaccine from the blood can be created within a few days. I want to help create a vaccine against influenza from my blood
    Dear. Doctor,
    Hello from infectious diseases 2019!
    The purpose of this letter is to greet you at our annual “5th Annual Congress on Infectious Diseases” October 21-22, 2019 in Frankfurt, Germany. Based on your experience, we would like to invite you to the Infectious Diseases 2019 event as a speaker.
    Dear Dr. Rishat Akhmetvaleev,
    Greetings from the infectious congress of 2019!
    On behalf of the Organizing Committee, I am pleased to invite you to the vibrant country of the United Arab Emirates to participate in the “World Conference on Infectious Diseases”, which will be held in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, from 25 to 26 November 2019. focus on “Innovative technologies and treatment for the treatment of infectious diseases”

  • And I think it will be worse in the winter. An example is Australia. And I can pogibit any strain of flu. The investigators of the UAE and Germany have already believed

  • WHICH STRAIN??? Or more correctly, which Influenzavirus A or B was it??? H3N2 / H1N1 / B Yamagata / other B?

  • I enter the risk group. 2 times a day every day I go to the mosque. I go to the hospital at least once a month to get a prescription for medicine. But I go to the hospital 5 times a month and communicate with the deputy head doctor of the PJSC Tatneft hospital. Researchers in Australia said that “killer T-cells”, found in more than half of the world’s population, showed that they were effective in testing against all common types of flu. I have t-cells significantly exceeded t-helper cells 1808 at a rate of 450-850, t-cytotoxic 945 at a rate of 270-540, T-lymphocytes 2835 at a rate of 600-2500, lymphocytes 4108 at a rate of 800-3600 and leukocytes 7900 at a rate of 4500 -8500. On the advice of a local immunologist, he made another immunogram after 20 days, the results are similar. A local immunologist said lymphocytosis as a result of t-cell activity. I am the most healthy sick person with two rare internal incurable diseases. For 4 years, only 1 time had the flu and. And had the flu for 3 days

  • I had the double antigen and still got this late flu. I was so sick I was off work for 2 weeks. Could not get FMLA because I was not hospitalized and because the CDC felt this flu season was not virulent enough. I was in the ER three times $150.00 each time. Fever 101-102 4 days solid. Short of breath x 2 weeks. Come on CDC!

    • What is it you want the CDC to do Leah. Perhaps you should 1. get better health cover or 2. wash your hands more frequently 3. avoid mixing with other people who have cough and cold symptoms

    • Leah, I’d recommend you cut down on your ER visits. Increase your fluid intake. Take ibuprofen and Tylenol together in combination if you don’t have an allergy or aversion to them. For pain and fever. When you go to the ER you expose others to the flu. Plus your weaken immune system is more susceptible to other illness from the sick people around you. The Fake media reports every case of the rare occurrence of people dieing from the flu. Which sensationalizes an causes unneeded visits to the ER. Stay home and drink more Gatorade.

  • What a lame excuse. Flu vaccines are a monumental flop. If researchers would develop a better vaccine more people might get vaccinated.

    • I couldn’t agree more. Pharmaceutical companies and the CDC claim. Flu Vaccines are a necessity even though they’re less than 50% effective year after year after year. Hospitals have started forcing Nurses and other Medical personal. To get Vaccinated as a condition of employment. Completely ludicrous and does nothing to prevent the flu. I can get all the flu Vaccines ever created and it doesn’t stop the transmission of the flu. Hand washing and disinfecting of surfaces helps prevent the flu. Anyone who likes messing with their immune system every year getting a Vaccine that doesn’t work. You have my condolences.

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