We strongly believe in the importance of giving the flu vaccine to our patients. Therefore, we allow our patients to walk in for flu vaccines while we’re open with the hours listed on our website. Staffing has even been increased while kids are out of school to make it quick and convenient for our patients and families to get their flu shot at all three of offices.
Influenza Cases Reported in Missouri
Influenza is already in the area with the CDC report showing 147 lab confirmed cases in Missouri during the week of October 7th – October 13th. There’s also been the death of a child because of influenza this year in Florida. (Per the Florida Health Department where the CDC reports sporadic activity of influenza currently.)
Per the American Academy of Pediatrics in September 2018, excluding the 2009 pandemic, the 179 pediatric deaths reported through August 18th, 2018, during the 2017–2018 season (approximately half of which occurred in otherwise healthy children) are the highest reported since influenza-associated pediatric mortality became a nationally notifiable condition in 2004.
As of October 6, 2018, a total of 183 pediatric deaths had been reported to CDC during the 2017-2018 season. This number exceeds the previously highest number of flu-associated deaths in children reported during a regular flu season (171 during the 2012-2013 season). Approximately 80% of these deaths occurred in children who had not received a flu vaccination this season.
Some sources estimate the total death toll from influenza nationwide last year to be 80,000 people. But only flu deaths in children are directly reported to the CDC.
American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Recommendations
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends annual influenza vaccination for everyone 6 months and older, including children and adolescents, during the 2018–2019 influenza season.
Special effort should be made to vaccinate individuals in the following groups:
- all children, including infants born preterm, 6 months and older (based on chronologic age) with chronic medical conditions that increase the risk of complications from influenza, such as pulmonary diseases (eg, asthma), metabolic diseases (eg, diabetes mellitus), hemoglobinopathies (eg, sickle cell disease), hemodynamically significant cardiac disease, immunosuppression, renal and hepatic disorders, or neurologic and neurodevelopmental disorders;
- all household contacts and out-of-home care providers of children with high-risk conditions or younger than 5 years, especially infants younger than 6 months;
- children and adolescents (6 months–18 years of age) receiving an aspirin- or salicylate-containing medication, which places them at risk for Reye syndrome after influenza virus infection;
- children who are American Indians and/or Alaskan natives;
- all health care personnel (HCP);
- all child care providers and staff; and
- all women who are pregnant, are considering pregnancy, are in the postpartum period, or are breastfeeding during the influenza season.
Also per the AAP, those patients with history of egg allergy can safely receive an influenza vaccine as long as there are no other contraindications to the vaccine.
Be sure to visit our contact page for office hours so you can plan a good time to get your flu vaccine.