Did you get your flu shot this year?
With 48 states reporting widespread influenza activity, flu season has come on fast and strong. As of the second week in January, according to data released by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), 29 children have died and 5,249 Americans have been hospitalized for flu-associated conditions.
What’s been most worrisome, GEN’s Alex Philippidis writes, is that there have been spot shortages of the vaccine despite manufacturers producing 145 million doses this flu season. What’s causing the shortages?
According to Philippidis, “The shortages followed a rush to doctors’ offices and drug stores once patients realized this year’s flu season would be more intense than the mild outbreaks of the two previous years. Blame it on the flu virus’ stubborn ability to mutate into new strains, forcing public health agencies to play catch-up every few years.”
No need to panic, though. CDC Spokesman Tom Skinner told GEN that there is enough vaccine out there to meet demand, but people who may want to get vaccinated may have to look around a few places to find it.