New FLU shots - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

New FLU shots

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Like so many Americans... Lilly Ramos and her family are going to skip getting the flu shot this year.

"No I'm not.. I've never gotten it and my kids have never gotten it as well.. I mean we moved to Tennessee and it was 5 degree weather and never gotten sick."

A lot of American say they aren't going to get the vaccine because even if they do they still get the flu. Changes in the flu vaccine may make that less likely. Currently each vaccine works against three strains of the flu but the strains changes so how do you design a vaccine. How do you hit this moving target?

"It's an educated guess, some years are better than others."

Said Dr. Catherine Troisi at the UT School of Public Health. She's an expert on this.

"What scientists do is look are what strains are circulating in the southern hemisphere where it's winter and they can make a pretty good prediction that those strains will be coming up to the northern hemisphere. So that's what vaccine production is based on."

She says it takes about six months to create and test a vaccine.. so it the strain changes.. The vaccine may not offer protection. In the past vaccines protected against three strains.. two influenza "A" strains and one "B".. The new so called Quadravelent vaccines will protect against four.. Two "A" and the "B." She says it's an added layer of protection.

"It doesn't really matter to you if you get vaccinated with three or four but we can protect more people. Particularly children."


Manufacturers say that they will produce between 135 million and 139 million doses of influenza vaccine for use in the United States during the 2013-2014 flu season. An estimated 30 million to 32 million of these doses will be quadrivalent flu vaccine. Eventually they will all be Quadravalent.

As for the people who don't get vaccinated. Troisi says consider this.. your odds of getting the flu if you don't are one in five...

"Just get vaccinated."

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