Transcript for Experts warn that this flu season could be a bad one
I'm here with Dr. Jen Ashton with that warning about the flu season. Jen, thanks for coming back. Yeah. Nih is warning this could be a pretty tough one. Let me explain why. We're tracking what's going on in the southern hemisphere as a preview as what will come here in the next couple of months and numbers out of Australia as of mid-october are concerning. What they're showing is about over 200,000 cases of flu, compare that to what they saw in 200 with the H1N1 with 59,000, this is concerning and the current circulating strain which is in this year's vaccine showing the vaccine only thought to be 10% effective. You hear that, it sounds bad. Better than zero percent. If you look at this map this is the current activity in the United States right now. Things are pretty quiet. It's early but we are seeing high flu activity in the south, Louisiana and Mississippi. You do tell us all to get the flu shot. I've gotten mine this year but surprising to see only 10% effective. It's the worst vaccine we have and that's why there's so much interest and research and need to develop what's called a universal vaccine. Right now the flu vaccine takes a long time to develop. It's grown in chick egg, adaptations can occur in that process that make it not a great vaccine but let me show you why there's so much interest in developing what's called a universal sax convenient and want to use the roses as an example. If I give you this bouquet you know they're roses but there are different colors to the rose petals. You can think of those like the circulating strains but there are also leaves, stem, thorns. In the development of a universal sack convenient we would almost cut the color of the rose petals off. You still know that these are roses, you still have the stems, the leaves and the thorns and that's what a universal vaccine would ago like. It's actually a more general vaccine that you would only need once in your life. You still know those are voroses. We're not there yet. What can you do. Still get vaccinated. 10% efficacy is get better than 0% and people can get sick and die of the flu. Practice good hand hygiene. We hear that again and again. If possible if you get sick stay home because you're only infecting other people. Good advice there, thanks again.
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