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Health Experts and Families Encourage Annual Childhood Flu Vaccination to Reduce Flu-Related Illnesses and Deaths in Children
Date:11/27/2007

Families Fighting Flu and CDC Partner to Declare November 27 "National Children's Flu Vaccination Day"

More Than 20,000 Children Under Age Five Are Hospitalized Each Year Due to the Flu

ATLANTA, Nov. 27 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Families Fighting Flu, Inc. (FFF), together with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other health organizations are reminding parents today to get their children, and those who live with and care for them, vaccinated against influenza, or "the flu." Vaccination is the single best means of protecting children from the flu and preventing the spread of influenza, which can lead to hospitalization and even death. To help raise awareness about the critical importance of annual pediatric influenza vaccination, November 27 has been designated as Children's Flu Vaccination Day, which occurs during the CDC's annual National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW, November 26 through December 2, 2007).

"Each year we hear the heart-wrenching stories of parents who have lost a child due to complications from influenza," said CDC Director Dr. Julie Gerberding. "These stories remind us how critical it is for parents to get their children vaccinated against flu, especially those aged six months to five years, and those with chronic health conditions such as asthma or diabetes. We have more vaccine available this year than ever before, so access to vaccine should be easy, and parents need to make this a top priority."

Flu vaccination is encouraged anytime between September through January or later, when the influenza season typically peaks.

The flu is a serious illness, especially in children, who are two-to-three times more likely to develop influenza than adults because of their less-developed immune systems. More than 20,000 children under the age of five are hospitalized due to the flu each year, and every year children die in the United States from influenza and its complications.
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SOURCE Families Fighting Flu, Inc.
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