Officials are urging people to get their flu shot more this year compared to years prior, especially to avoid the possibility of a twindemic.
A twindemic would happen when the flu and COVID-19 both become a major issue at the same time. Both these illnesses cause respiratory distress, hospitalization, and sometimes death.
Last year the flu didn’t become an issue because people remained socially distanced, stuck at home, and most people get the flu shot.
RSV and rhinovirus were also not around as much last year as they normally would be seasonally.
All of these viruses have started spreading again with restrictions eased up, and officials expect the flu to do the same.
Every year when the flu spreads normally, which it did not last year, tens of thousands die from flu-related issues. The season usually runs between October and May in the U.S.
With the shifting and changes is flu season last years, experts don’t know what to expect and urge people to get the flu shot to be prepared.
Normally when preparing flu vaccines every year, experts choose three or four of the most likely strains of flu to spread during the upcoming season.
It is not guaranteed how high the effectiveness of the flu shot might be; some years it’s been as low as 19% and others as high as 60%.
Last year there were only 2,038 flu cases reported. In 2019-2020 there were 38 million cases.
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