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In Massachusetts, most students need to get the flu vaccine to reduce the strain on their healthcare system during a pandemic


Influenza vaccinations are being given in Chicago.

Antonio Perez | Chicago Tribune | Getty Images

In Massachusetts, the state is preparing to deal with both Covid-19 and seasonal flu this fall, so most students over the last six months need to get the flu vaccine. In a statement Wednesday.

This requirement applies to all students aged 6 months or older who are attending a state daycare, kindergarten, kindergarten, elementary school, or university. The state expects students to be vaccinated by December 31, 2020 unless they provide medical or religious exemptions.

Students in attendance and affected college students who live off campus during the semester will also be exempted, the state said. But college students who “once” attend campus activities must be vaccinated by 31 December, the state said.

Massachusetts said students needed vaccination to enter school in January.

“The need for a new vaccine is an important step in reducing the overall impact of influenza-related illness and respiratory illness during the COVID-19 pandemic,” the Massachusetts Department of Public Health said in a statement Wednesday. ..

Delegation takes place as the country prepares for the confluence of the standard flu season and the Covid-19 pandemic. Less than half of adults in the United States, and about 60% of children, are usually vaccinated against influenza every year, CDC data show.. According to the CDC, influenza causes illness in 9 to 45 million Americans each year, at least 140,000 are hospitalized, and 12,000 to 61,000 die each year.

Public health officials, including Dr. Anthony Fauci of the White House Coronavirus Advisor and Dr. Robert Redfield of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have so far called on Americans to be vaccinated against influenza this season.

“Every year, thousands of people of all ages are affected by the flu, resulting in many hospitalizations and deaths,” said Dr. Larry Madoff, MD, director of the Institute of Infectious Diseases at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Stated. “Getting the flu vaccine is more important than ever, because the symptoms of influenza are very similar to those of Covid-19, and preventing it can save lives and conserve medical resources. “

To meet the surge in demand for influenza vaccines this year, four flu vaccine manufacturers say they plan to ship The dose to the United States was about 200 million times, an increase of about 19% from last season.

The worsening season of the flu this year will put additional strain on the hospital. Many hospitals are already thin to treat Covid-19 patients. Some epidemiologists, including Dr Michael Osterholm, who is responsible for the Center for Infectious Diseases Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, said that the country is trying to maintain face-to-face classes and meteorological forces as the country seeks coronavirus this winter. People indoors who are more likely to spread the virus, warning that they may see an increase in cases.

State officials, including New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, have warned that both viruses could be widespread at the same time, complicating fall and winter.

“You are in the flu season. Everyone is sneezing, everyone is coughing, everyone has a runny nose. Who can have the flu and who can be Covid positive That’s a much harder calculation,” Cuomo said in a news briefing Monday.

“Maybe God is a good man, he told us this year, “You have had enough. I will give you a mild flu season this year that suits you.” But it’s definitely It’s a system stressor,” he added. “It will add additional stress to the hospital. It will add additional stress to the test facility.”

— CNBC Meg Tyrrell And Harriet taylor I contributed to this report.


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