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Myth or Fact??

  • Posted on Jan 6, 2017

Myth: Influenza Is a Harmless Illness, so Vaccination Is Unnecessary

Although influenza is commonly considered to be a mild illness, this is certainly not always the case. Influenza can be a large threat to public health, with three pandemics and millions of deaths from influenza in the 20th century. During the last pandemic period of the H1N1 virus (June 2009 to August 2010), 18,449 deaths were attributed to influenza, although the global death rate was certainly higher.

Influenza can have serious complications, including severe pneumonia, encephalopathy (a disease affecting brain function/structure) and myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle).  Furthermore, a considerable number of deaths related to heart and lung complications are known to also follow influenza epidemics.

Particularly for people with underlying medical conditions like asthma, young children and pregnant women, the risk for influenza-associated complications is higher and flu vaccination is strongly recommended.

Leigh, CPNP

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COVID INFORMATION UPDATE December 2021

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