What You Should Know About This Year’s Flu Shot

Are you a little weary about getting the flu shot this year?

We don’t blame you.

Last year, the CDC admitted that the flu vaccine in rotation was not as effective in fighting the flu as experts had hoped, all due to an antigenic H3N2 strain that wasn’t protected against in 2014-15’s batch of flu shots. H3N2 was the most common strain of influenza last year and around half of them were drift variants.

Still, you can’t let last year’s flu shot effect whether or not you get this year’s. In fact, even when the shot is admittedly not as effective, you should still get it.

Here’s why it’s not a good idea to skip the flu shot this year — and the good news about 2015-16’s vaccine.

Don’t Skip the Flu Shot This Year – Here’s Why

The flu (and the shot) were different last year.

Every year, the dominant flu strains change, and the flu shot changes along with them. Last winter, experts got together to determine what strains of the flu will be most prevalent in the next year. This includes the CDC, the World Health Organization, and other prominent public health experts. The experts gather well in advance of flu season so that manufacturers have time to produce and distribute the flu shot to health professionals.

As we said, last year, these experts were unable to predict that the H3N2 strand of the flu would drift (unfortunately, their scientific expertise does not endow them with the ability to see the future!). But just because a strain drifted last year doesn’t mean one will drift this year.

2015-16’s Flu Shot Should be More Effective

Experts do agree it’s too early to say for certain how effective this year’s flu shot will be. However, steps have been taken so that last year’s drifted strain is included in this year’s shot.

The trivalent shot for the season contains a mix of the mutated H3N2 strain, H1N1, and B/Phuket. These are the strains that the experts agreed should be most widely in circulation.

Still unsure about the flu shot?

Make sure you read up on the vaccine and its benefits for workplaces, individuals, communities, and vulnerable populations, including children.

Also, be sure that you are well-informed and not buying in to any flu shot myths — there are many of them out there, and they can be just as dangerous as the flu itself!

Test Smartly Labs: Helping You Fight the Flu

Many nationwide Test Smartly Labs locations offer the flu shot for individuals and workplaces. Many can even provide on-site services!

To learn more about getting your flu shot at Test Smartly Labs, contact your nearest location today.

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