This season's most common strain is particularly deadly to the very young and very old, officials warn. - From HuffPost
Daniel Jernigan, director of the CDC’s Influenza Division, told “Good Morning America.” “That’s about a month earlier than it normally would be peaking,” he said, “so lots of cases [are] happening, in lots of states, all at the same time.” Health officials have warned that H3N2, the most common strain of the virus they’ve seen, is particularly vicious.
On the West Coast, the flu has hit California particularly hard, with the state reporting 27 flu-associated deaths so far among people under age 65.
Public health specialist and Australian Immunisation Coalition Chairman Paul Van Buynder had suggested the outbreak was Australia’s “biggest on record.” Adding to Australia’s health struggle, the current H3N2 vaccine that was administered during its flu season was reportedly only 10 percent effective against the virus.
That’s sparked some concern that the vaccine won’t be helpful for Americans.
Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Disease, told The New York Times that such fears are likely unfounded.