YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The Centers for Disease Control says now is the time to get a flu shot. And this year, there are some changes.
For the first time this year, people with severe egg allergies can get a flu shot.
There is also a new vaccine available for people over 65 years and older that helps the body’s immune response.
Dr. Susan Rehn with the Cleveland Clinic says experts do their best to determine which vaccine will be the most effective, but even with the flu shot people may get sick. The CDC says last year’s vaccine was 47 percent effective.
This year, the flu vaccine protects against three viruses, including H1N1. In some cases, new strains will appear mid-way through the flu season.
“Many times, the peak of the season is right at the end of the year. That is why it is important to get vaccinated as early as the vaccine is available. We don’t know when it is going to start, so you have to be prepared.”
It takes two weeks for the protection from the vaccine to be effective.
The CDC does not recommend using the flu mist, noting it has not been effective in protecting people from the flu virus.
Diligent hand washing and staying home when feeling ill are the best ways to prevent the spread of the flu virus.