According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention’s Weekly U.S. Influenza Surveillance Report, influenza activity in the United States has risen significantly, signaling the official start of the 2018-2019 flu season. The CDC monitors flu activity on a weekly basis, and when an analysis of that activity demonstrates a sustained increase across several key indicators, that is an indication that flu season has arrived. Flu activity officially met the “flu season” criteria the week of December 15th.
The CDC anticipates that elevated flu activity will continue for several weeks. “With significant flu still to come this season, CDC continues to recommend that anyone who has not yet gotten a flu vaccine this season should get vaccinated now. It takes approximately two weeks for the protection provided by vaccination to begin.” Robert Redfield, MD, Director of the CDC, stressed the importance of getting the influenza vaccine in an interview with HealthDay News. “Vaccination is the key strategy we have to prevent and eliminate the consequences of influenza”, noted Dr. Redfield.
Learn more about influenza here.