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Online Discussion: Tracking new emerging diseases and the next pandemic; Now tracking the Aussie Flu.

Worst flu season on record headed to U.S?

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Albert View Drop Down
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    Posted: October 04 2017 at 8:11pm
Interesting article.  Not sure how this could be the worst flu season on record when including the 1918 pandemic, but apparently it's going to be a bad one.  If any of this is accurate, the WHO will need to make some announcements, one of which possibly declaring a pandemic.  

Bracing for the worst flu season on record
Oxford Medicine Online
By Anna Shannon
  • This year, 2017, is braced to historically be the worst flu season ever recorded, according to the Nation Health Service (NHS). Doctors and hospitals may struggle to cope with the increase in demand, following the spike of influenza cases from Australia and New Zealand, who have recently come out of their winter season.

    With three classified types of influenza, A, B, and C, it is A and B viruses which cause the large outbreaks. In Europe, nearly all seasonal flu is attributed to influenza A. This year there have been over 170,000 influenza cases, nearly three times the amount compared to last year. Vaccination is an important part of protecting against the flu, especially with the record high amount of cases already reported this season. Research is also now suggesting that being in a positive mood, as well as genetics, can increase the effectiveness of the flu vaccination.

    Hover over each icon below to learn more about influenza.

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    Featured image credit: Sneeze by Mojpe. CC0 public domain via Pixabay.








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    John L. View Drop Down
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    Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote John L. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 05 2017 at 3:07am
    More likely a season like we had in 1968, I remember the misery still of the Hong Kong flu pandemic, and of course vaccine was too late.  This year egg based vaccines may not even work.  And in addition to my earlier posts, early cases now starting in Pennsylvania, Colorado and South Carolina.
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    Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Albert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 05 2017 at 2:18pm
    The WHO may ultimately declare a pandemic.
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    Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote FluMom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 05 2017 at 4:56pm
    OK so why will the current vaccine not work. Egg has always been the way flu vaccine is and has been made.

    I had my son get the quadrivalent yesterday because of the cytokine storm that may have been the reason for deaths in Australia.

    As my old mama says, "Do your best so you do not feel guilty." I did my best had my son and I get a flu shot the rest is up to GOD.
    Always Be Prepared
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    Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Albert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 05 2017 at 5:31pm
    Good question about the vaccine.  I'm wondering why the CDC and media are not warning the public that we are facing something similar to the Hong Kong pandemic.   The U.S. is clueless what it's in for.  They could at least warn people to get the vaccine, even if it is worthless.   Each year we hear to the vaccine hype and flu season is approaching.  This is going to be one of the worst flu seasons ever, and not a peep, lol.  Somethings are so strange you almost have to laugh about it. 
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    Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 05 2017 at 5:40pm
    It seems to have our health service worried.

    Free vaccinations are given out over here according to predicted risk.  Every year I have had to beg for it and some years am refused - too healthy!  This year, our surgery rang us to offer both the vaccine and the pneumonia jab.  To say this is out of character is to understate the situation.

    Genetic drift is quite fast in flu viruses, so no vaccine lasts very long.  However, the most recent adaptations are usually sufficiently small to mean that the out-of-date vaccines will still give some protection, just not as much.  So, you would still get the flu if vaccinated, but would be far less likely to become seriously, or fatally, ill from it.

    I have no idea why the egg produced vaccines are less effective this time.  Statistics say they are, but don't give any clues as to why.

    FluMom has it about right.  Get the best you can and then feel at peace with whatever you achieved.  Our surgery, for all their determination to vaccinate the largest number it can this year, offered egg based trivalent vaccines,  I grabbed it with both hands!  Some protection beat none.  It still put me down for 48 hours though!
    Absence of proof is not proof of absence.
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    Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote John L. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 06 2017 at 5:41am
    For the explanation re. the egg based vaccines read my earlier post about the WHO swapping strains for next years Southern Hemisphere vaccine.  I yesterday obtained my shot of Flucelvac Quadvalent (they also have a trivalent thus) which I think may be the only cell based vaccine in the U.S  Basically you will see in teh article that recent H3N2 strains were found to have mutated away from the vaccine strain that was used to grow well in eggs, but not from the different strain used in cellular derived manufacture.  Thus the current egg based vaccines are less likely to work as well, I am not saying they will not work at all.
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    Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote arirish Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 06 2017 at 9:28am
    Comment: I read somewhere that it mutated in Hong Kong back in June!



    Thousands are hit by virus flu strain not covered by vaccine


    MORE than half the patients in western Sydney diagnosed with the influenza A virus have also been carrying the mutant strain of the virus, widely known as the killer flu.

    The flu season which began in June, placed a strain on nurses at Blacktown Hospital as it filled up hospital beds and emergency departments.

    The mutated influenza A H3N2 strain was identified as responsible for most of the 300 elderly lives lost across the east coast even though it was included in this year’s flu vaccine.

    Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) Population Health director Professor Stephen Corbett said the flu was continuing to pose a risk.

    “Across NSW, between 50-70 per cent of flu tests in patients during this period were positive for flu A. Only a proportion of flu A tests are further subtypes, and of these around two-thirds were influenza A (H3N2),” Professor Corbett said.

    “Across Western Sydney Local Health District, there were 14,555 influenza notifications in the community between June and September, 8300 of which were flu A.”

    Out of the 8300 flu A samples tested in western Sydney, around 60 per cent were the mutant strain.

    As of September 9, 218 influenza-associated deaths have been reported to NSW public health units.

    NSW Health director communicable diseases Dr Vicky Sheppeard said it was “likely that most influenza deaths are due to H3N2” in aged care but not all cases are tested.

    Early indications are the virus strain changed in the four months between manufacture and release of the quadrivalent vaccine in April.

    However, experts have stressed this means getting the vaccine is more important than ever to reduce the severity of the illness and help slow the spread of the killer strain.


    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/newslocal/blacktown-advocate/thousands-are-hit-by-virus-flu-strain-not-covered-by-vaccine/news-story/e56ca01057827806dfcfb613ac078eac
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    Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote John L. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 06 2017 at 12:50pm
    Add California to my list of outbreaks, and now a first flu death there.  From http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/health/sd-me-flu-death-20171006-story.html




    First flu death of the season reported

    San Diego has recorded its first flu death of the 2017-18 season, according to the county Health and Human Services Agency.

    An 87-year-old San Diego man, who had other unspecified medical conditions, died after testing positive for influenza infection. He had not been vaccinated.

    At the moment, it looks like this season will be a rough one. Already the health department has confirmed 203 flu cases, more than three times the 60 cases confirmed by the same point last year.

    Last season the flu killed 86 county residents, including two children, and the first death occurred on Oct. 4.

    Public health officials are urging everyone, but especially those at elevated risk of flu complications, to roll up their sleeves and get flu shots. Those at increased risk include:

    • Pregnant women
    • Those age 65 and older
    • Children younger than age 5
    • Nursing home residents
    • Those with medical conditions such as asthma, chronic lung disease, heart disease and disorders of the blood, endocrine system, kidney, liver, metabolism, central nervous system and immune system.

    The county is sponsoring a number of free flu clinics in October. Dial 2-1-1 to find the closest location.


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    Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote carbon20 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 06 2017 at 2:58pm




    Generic flu,. influenza, cold, sniffle shot.
     
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    Image: 

    ABC News: Kym Agius

    More flu deaths expected as debate over vaccine ensues

    By Caroline Winter on PM

    There's a dire warning from Australia's Chief Medical Officer today, that the death toll from this year's flu outbreak is expected to rise.

    One-hundred-and-seventy-thousand formally diagnosed flu cases have been recorded already this year, and at least 100 people have died.

    An eight-year-old girl died from flu last week, another woman is fighting for life in a coma, while the elderly have been hardest hit.

    It's raised questions about the effectiveness of the vaccine and what is being done about future immunisation programs.

    Duration: 4min 32sec
    More Information

    Featured:
    Brendan Murphy, Australian Chief Medical Officer 
    Gillian McGinty, Chief Executive of Boandik Lodge
    Jill Hennessy, Victorian Health Minister



    12 monkeys!!!!!
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