Flu shot this year updated to protect against influenza A & B

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Three flu strains were the cause of this past season's outbreak: influenza B, H1N1, and H3N2.

Fatal complications from the flu can include pneumonia, stroke and heart attack.

Each year, vaccines are produced in accordance with the CDC's predictions for the types of viruses most likely to circulate during flu season.

Vulnerable populations like children, older adults, and those with weakened immune systems were especially affected by last year's flu.

As autumn brings another flu season, CDC director Dr. Robert Redfield told the AP that "I'd like to see more people get vaccinated".

The CDC estimates at least 80,000 Americans died of flu-related complications last winter, exceeding the 56,000 deaths that occurred during the 2012-2013 flu season.

"I think that my generation is a little bit more into holistic techniques and medications right now", said Ashley Vicari, 25, who says getting a flu vaccine is not as important to her and her friends. However, according to the CDC, the flu shot may cause mild side-effects that could be mistaken for flu symptoms.

What about if you're already feeling the flu coming on?

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"Getting the flu shot isn't just about keeping you safe and healthy", he said.

Medicago Inc., a biotechnology company, owns the first plant-based seasonal flu vaccine to reach late-stage clinical trials.

Flu vaccinations are strongly recommended for everyone six months of age and older.

In a panel hosted by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Washington on Thursday, Surgeon General Jerome Adams took a nasal vaccine - an effort, he said, to make flu prevention "go viral".

"Some people, as we get later in the season, think it is too late for them because they already got the flu, but previous year we had an influx of cases where people had gotten one strain of the flu, and then when the other strain came in the area, they got that one, too", Frank said.

The vaccine can reduce flu illness and hospitalizations, can protect pregnant women during and after pregnancy and be lifesaving in children, Jernigan said. "The strongest predictor of whether or not a person gets vaccination is whether or not they get a strong provider recommendation", Adams said.

There are a number of reasons why this last flu season was so bad. "Flu can lead to progressive decline and progressive disability", said Dr. Schaffner. Neither type of vaccination can infect you with the flu. It is a contagious respiratory illness, believed to be spread by droplets from coughing, sneezing or talking, which can land in the mouths or noses of nearby people. The vaccine promotes antibody protection within two weeks.

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