CDC urges flu everyone to receive flu shot

Although the influenza strains included in the upcoming season's trivalent vaccine remain the same from last season, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to recommend vaccinations for everyone older than six months.
This season's vaccines protect against pandemic H1N1 virus, in addition to an H3N2 and a B strain, according to new recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices published in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, MedPage Today reports.
Since studies have shown that protection can wane in the year after receiving the vaccine, all who are eligible should still be vaccinated again this season, Carolyn Bridges of the CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease said on a conference call with reporters, according to MedPage Today.
According to the recommendations, children younger than nine typically receive two vaccine doses to provide sufficient protection against the flu, but because the strains are the same as last season, any child who received at least one vaccine dose last season only needs to get one for the upcoming season.
Two groups have been identified as high priorities for vaccination - healthcare personnel and pregnant women.
The receipt of the trivalent seasonal vaccine changed little for healthcare personnel in the last two seasons, with a vaccination rate of 61.9 percent in 2009-2010 and 63.5 percent in 2010-2011. The vaccination rates in 2009-2010 were higher than in the previous decade, which has been attributed to the H1N1 pandemic.
The coverage rate for pregnant women also showed minimal change from 2009-2010 to the most recent season. While the vaccination rate has stayed at around 15 percent historically, it spiked to approximately 50 percent during the H1N1 pandemic. The CDC's Health People 2020 goal for pregnant women is an 80 percent vaccination rate.