More flu expected in the state; vaccine effectiveness estimates released

  • Thursday, February 15, 2018 3:02pm
  • Life

For the Reporter

Preliminary data released Thursday estimates the 2017-2018 flu vaccine to be 36 percent overall effective at preventing flu illness.

Washington’s health officials want everyone to know it isn’t too late to get a flu shot since flu activity is still expected to be high for several more weeks.

This year is a reminder of how unpredictable and serious flu can be. Every flu season is different based on many factors including the circulating viruses and how well the flu shot protects against those viruses.

“Washington has seen a lot of the H3N2 strain of flu, which causes more severe illness in young children and those over 65 years old,” said Washington state’s Communicable Disease Epidemiologist Dr. Scott Lindquist. “This year’s vaccine protects against H3N2, but that strain of the virus is known to change frequently throughout the season, making the vaccine less effective against the virus. Protection is higher against other strains included in the vaccine and can help flu illness be milder and shorter for those who still get sick.”

The Department of Health urges everyone aged six months and older, including pregnant women, to knock out flu with a flu shot. Visit KnockOutFlu.org for places to get your vaccine, weekly flu activity updates, and frequently asked questions and concerns about the flu vaccine.

“There are important steps to take to avoid getting the flu; get a flu shot every year, avoid contact with sick people, wash your hands often and stay home if you’re sick. No vaccine is 100 percent effective, but they still provide some protection against serious flu complications, including death,” Lindquist said.

More in Life

Courtesy photo
The ABBAgraphs coming to the Ave

Tribute band brings back the sounds of Swedish pop group

BowieVision lead singer Stefan Mitchell. COURTESY PHOTO
BowieVision performs at the Auburn Ave on Sept. 28.

BowieVision will bring an epic and intimate experience when the band performs… Continue reading

Bringing all types of art to life

Creative, versatile Brugger to teach Green River College’s first ever how-to animation class this fall

Hops & Crops Music and Beer Festival returning to Mary Olson Farm

Tickets on sale for Sept. 15 gathering at Auburn’s historic hamlet

Auburn-area community calendar | Sept. 12

Events Auburn Tourism: For special events or to add a special event,… Continue reading

Auburn library September listings | KCLS

Events for adults, families and children

The Washington State Fair in Puyallup continues through Sept. 23, with big fun, big food and big concerts. Guest can enjoy their favorite foods, rides, vendors and entertainment. COURTESY PHOTO
Auburn-area community calendar | Sept. 7

Key events, programs and other listings

Answers may be hard to come

You’re on the edge of your chair. Curiosity is almost killing you;… Continue reading

‘If You Love Me’ deserves a spot on your bookshelf

First tooth, first step. Every milestone your baby passed was reason for… Continue reading

Returning sounds

Northwest broadcaster and poet donates historic radio programming archive to museum

Auburn-area community calendar | Aug. 17

Event listings, including fundraisers and museum programming

Dive into the story of the average gig-employee

Your allowance was never enough, as a kid. Oh, sure, it bought… Continue reading