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Influenza

Misperceptions Hinder Flu Prevention and Treatment Efforts

The National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID) recently conducted a national Flu Behaviors and Treatment survey to understand public attitudes, experiences, and knowledge about flu prevention and treatment. The survey found that while most US adults understand that flu is serious (93%) and highly contagious (87%) and know the importance of annual flu vaccination (66%), only one-fourth (27%) would call a doctor for advice…

National Influenza Vaccination Week: Don’t Stop Now!

Don’t Stop Now! As we come together to recognize National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW) on December 8-14, 2013, it is heartening to know that last flu season, more children were vaccinated against influenza than ever before. This represents tremendous progress in childhood influenza immunization since the Childhood Influenza Immunization Coalition (CIIC) was created in 2007, and we don’t want to stop…

Take Steps to Prevent Flu

Today marks the beginning of National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW), a national observance that was established to highlight the importance of annual influenza vaccination. Influenza, more commonly referred to as the flu, is a serious and contagious respiratory illness that affects 5-20% of the US population and hospitalizes over 200,000 people every year. The flu season typically runs from October–March, peaking in January…

ID News Round-Up

Recent items of interest from the world of vaccine-preventable diseases: 1. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) met on October 23-24, 2013 to discuss recommendations and potential changes to the 2014 Immunization Schedules. ACIP recommended that infants 2-23 months who are at high-risk for meningococcal disease, or who travel to areas where it is hyperendemic or epidemic, be given the quadrivalent meningococcal vaccine,…

Making Influenza Prevention a National Health Priority

Influenza (flu) prevention was front and center at the 2013 NFID Influenza/Pneumococcal News Conference held this week at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. News conference panelists included Dr. Howard K. Koh, Assistant Secretary for Health at the US Department of Health and Human Services; Dr. Anne Schuchat, Assistant Surgeon General, US Public Health Service and Director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases…

A Night at the Ballpark Raising Flu Awareness

NFID kicked off its 2013-2014 influenza (flu) season awareness activities with the 2nd Annual Flu Awareness Night at Nationals Park in Washington, DC on Wednesday, September 18, 2013 to a crowd of 36,000 fans. Originally planned for Monday 9/16, the event was rescheduled due to the tragic events at the Navy Yard. As part of NFID’s campaign to increase flu awareness and encourage all individuals 6 months and…

Adults: Vaccines Aren’t Just For Kids

The month of August has been designated as National Immunization Awareness Month. As a partnering organization, the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID) is helping to promote the importance of immunization in keeping our communities healthy. Each year, thousands of adults in the United States suffer serious health problems from vaccine-preventable diseases including influenza (flu), whooping cough, hepatitis A and B,…

Weekly Round-Up: Infectious Disease News of Interest

Items of interest from the world of vaccine-preventable diseases this week: 1. A new study from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that human papillomavirus (HPV) infections in teenage girls have decreased by more than 50% since the introduction of the HPV vaccine in 2006. 2. Vaccine advocate and 2013 recipient of NFID’s Maxwell Finland Award for Scientific Achievement, Dr. Paul…

Weekly Round-Up: Infectious Disease News of Interest

Items of interest from the world of vaccine-preventable diseases this week: 1. The recent outbreak of Hepatitis A linked to frozen berries has reached 79 people. However, according to Seattle Mama Doc, Wendy Sue Swanson, MD, few kids are being infected since there is a ‘vaccine for that’! 2. A bold new campaign from the Vermont Department of Health called “It’s…

Something Old, Something New in Vaccines

There is the old adage “Something old, something new, something borrowed…” While this is typically found in the world of weddings, last week also saw it in the world of vaccines. First is the “old”…North Carolina is currently experiencing an outbreak of measles. The count is now up to 19 affected in several different counties. The outbreak has been traced…

Etiquette Tips for Flu Season

As the flu season winds down, it’s still important to remember the importance of flu etiquette in controling the spread of germs. This guest post was written by Anna Post, great-great-granddaughter of Emily Post, and modern etiquette expert. As the flu spread across the country this season, it was clearly nothing to sneeze about: seasonal influenza is highly contagious and can travel up to about…

2012-13 Influenza Season Takes Its Toll

Like all viruses, influenza, or flu, doesn’t discriminate and the 2012-13 flu season has clearly shown this – taking its toll on everyone including actors like Hugh Jackman, Meryl Streep, Betty White, and Sofia Vergara to sports teams including the Boston Bruins! This flu season has wreaked havoc and as Dr. Wendy Keitel of Baylor College of Medicine noted, “following on the…