Influenza Rates in Australia Concern US Experts


Sarah Peddie

Influenza rates in Australia have raised concerns with healthcare experts in the United States of America as they prepare for the flu season.

Australia has had one of its worst flu seasons on record. There have been a total of 284,069 laboratory confirmed notifications of influenza for 2019 at the end of last week. 

However, the actual number of people with influenza is likely to be much higher, approaching the 300,000 mark.

The flu season also started early down under this year. It usually takes place from June to October and peaks in August or September. However, this year, influenza cases started to appear in March through to May and peaked in June and July. 

Australia's last bad flu season was back in 2017 but this year is even worse for the country.

Due to the extremely high number of cases in Australia, experts in the United States are preparing for the worst.

The US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention have advised people to get vaccinated before the start of the flu season. They said that vaccinations should take place by the end of October.

For children who are aged six months to eight years, who need two doses, should receive the first as soon as possible once it becomes available in order to receive the second by the end of October.

For the 2019-2020 flu season, manufacturers have estimated that there will be 162-169 million doses available in the US.

Figures have shown that the vaccine used in Australia was effective.

Experts have said no matter how severe the flu season may be, everyone should get vaccinated.

It may not completely eliminate the possibility that you’ll get the flu but it is the best way to protect yourself. 

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