Flu Strains Different In 2015; Vaccines Available

Oct 19, 2015

Flu season is upon us. Typically it starts in Southeast Asia and makes its way around the globe. Oregon is one of the last states to see flu outbreaks— they start appearing in mid-October.

People underestimate the common flu—it can be deadly-- especially to those with compromised immune systems. Jason Davis is with Lane County Public Health.

Davis: "Flu ranks up there with the best of them. It kills anywhere from 40,000 to 65,000 people per year. A huge number and it's not an airplane crash it's not a shark attack. It's not these big scary things. It's just the common flu, Influenza, that's spread through the air that we see pop up every single year."

Last year the CDC admitted the flu shot wasn't as effective as it could have been. Public health officials are targeting a different strain this year. The vaccine has been developed to combat the H3-N2 and types "A" and "B" strains.  The flu shot is not free but is available at low-cost and most insurance covers it.