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Physicians concerned about possible twins with influenza and COVID-19

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We are all closely tracking the COVID vaccine, but we already have a vaccine against the flu. So the doctor says-get it.

Atlanta — If you haven’t heard the word Twindemic yet, get ready. Infectious disease experts are jumping into the flu season to keep hospitals from flooding both Influenza and COVID This winter case.

Real protection takes real participation. Only 45% of those who qualified last year Influenza vaccine.. And the vaccine only prevents about half the time of the flu.

“The effectiveness of vaccines diminishes with age. Therefore, those who need it most, the elderly, may not be very protective with the vaccines available, but young people do. If I vaccinate myself and my children, I will protect my parents, “said Dr. Carlos Del Rio, Vice Dean. Grady Health System’s Emory School of Medicine Said.

Prior to the introduction of COVID-19, influenza was a deadly virus that was worried about killing older people and keeping children from going home. Earlier this year, 72 people in Georgia died of the flu, and in 2018, flu killed three times as many as 243 in the United States.

“Influenza is not a trivial illness,” Del Rio said.

Relation: Doctors urge parents to consider flu shots for children in a pandemic

Thanks to the vaccine, their number is small compared to COVID-19. Over 6,000 people have died Georgia. But infectious disease professionals are worried about more than just potentially fatal consequences. They are worried about what both virus outbreaks can do to our hospital system.

“I hope many manufacturers are developing platforms that allow them to test for COVID and the flu at the same time,” said Dr. Del Rio.

Throughout the 2019-2020 flu season Public Health Service 2,519 people were hospitalized for the virus, and thankfully the COVID-19 became established and began to decline. Since March, 10 times more people are seeking treatment for the coronavirus. But Downtrend In some cases, the community still has more COVIDs than in March and April.

“It’s scary to link the influenza epidemic with the resurrection of COVID 19 at the same time,” said Dr. Walter Orenstein, Deputy Director of the Emory Vaccine Center.

But Emory’s doctors say there is hope because the same things that protect us from COVID, such as washing hands, wearing masks, and moving away from society, can protect us from the flu. ..

Relation: CDC officials said they would control COVID-19 in 4-12 weeks if everything was masked, washed hands, and kept social distance.

“It may actually prevent us from having a serious flu season this year, coupled with those who get the vaccine. And that’s exactly what happened in the Southern Hemisphere. Australia, New Zealand, Chile, Argentina. COVID There was almost no flu this winter because we are working for.

The CDC generally begins tracking the next flu season on October 1, but flu traditionally does not cause problems until November. It peaks in late January or February.

Dr. Orenstein says that you should be vaccinated against the flu as much as possible, but mid-October seems to be a general rule for maintaining protection against strains of the virus until early spring.

Even with restrictions on the effectiveness of the flu vaccine and the rate at which it is taken, the CDC estimates that approximately 49% of the population was vaccinated in 2018/2019, preventing 4.4 million illnesses nationwide. .. It also helped prevent 58,000 hospitalizations and 3,500 deaths.

Dr. Del Rio also emphasizes that influenza does not only have serious consequences for older people. He remembers being surprised at how many young people he saw in the intensive care unit while helping in the clinic last January. He spoke with a wife who said her husband had never been vaccinated against the flu.

“I now understand why our doctors insisted on it so strongly!” She commented to him.

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