Delaying flu shots until October could prevent 22K illnesses, study finds

From Becker’s:

Fall is the best time to start vaccinating people against the flu, according to a study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

For the study, researchers from the University of Pittsburgh (Pa.) School of Medicine ran computer models to compare flu likelihood in adults over age 65 vaccinated between August and May — the typical vaccination period — or during a compressed period from October to May. Researchers forecasted figures on flu cases, hospitalizations and deaths using CDC data from the 2013-14 and 2014-15 flu seasons.

The study found a compressed vaccination period could save up to 258 lives and prevent up to 22,062 flu cases for normal and late flu seasons, compared to a typical vaccination period. However, if flu season peaks early, hundreds more adults would die during a compressed vaccination period.

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