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Americans Urged To Get Seasonal Influenza Vaccine Early
Date:9/10/2009

tant that we take the threat of seasonal flu seriously, and vaccination is the best course of prevention."

Thomas Frieden, MD, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, emphasized some important things people should do when it comes to influenza. "To protect themselves and others against the flu, it's important to stay home when sick, cover coughs and sneezes, and wash hands often. Get the flu vaccines according to the recommendations of CDC and your doctor. Seasonal flu vaccine is available now. And if you or someone in your household has the flu and either have an underlying medical problem or are very sick, see a doctor or health care provider right away for treatment."

At the news conference, infectious disease specialists also urged people aged 65-plus and those younger than 65 with certain risk factors to make sure they get their pneumococcal vaccine. Any influenza infection can put people at increased risk for pneumococcal infection, which can cause severe illness, including bacterial pneumonia, bloodstream infection and meningitis. A one-time pneumococcal vaccination is necessary to protect most adults who are in the groups recommended for the pneumococcal vaccine.

Dr. Schaffner advised older persons and also anyone who smokes, has asthma or other chronic medical conditions to get the pneumococcal vaccine. "Since we expect increased influenza cases overall this fall, pneumococcal vaccination is that much more important," he said.

Americans Continue to Have Questions as Flu Season Begins

According to data released at the conference, the public continues to have questions about seasonal influenza. In a survey of 1,000 U.S. adults commissioned by NFID, 48 percent had specific questions about seasonal influenza and the vaccine. Respondents were asked to provide the one most important question they had about seasonal influenza; their q
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SOURCE National Foundation for Infectious Diseases
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
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