Unlike the DTap and MMR vaccines, which are required for a child to attend school, the flu vaccine is optional. About 38 percent of Americans refuse the vaccine, mainly because they think they don’t need it, believe it’s ineffective, or are scared of the side effects. If you’re one of these people, you may now want to reconsider the benefits of getting the flu vaccination, especially when it comes to your kids.
Evidence that the Flu Vaccine May Save Your Child’s Life
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention just released results of a study that showed that 75 percent of the children who died of the flu between 2010 and 2014 did not receive the flu vaccine in the recent months leading up to their infection. To paint a better picture of the impact that the flu vaccine may have on saving lives, 216 out of the 291 children that died from the flu did not have the flu vaccine. It’s also important to note that most of these children were considered healthy before they received the vaccination.
Brendan Flannery, a CDC epidemiologist who led the study, stated, “This study tells us that we can prevent more of these deaths by vaccinating more.”
Flu Vaccine Considerations for Parents
Parents may be even more wary to take their kids for the flu vaccine now that the FluMist is no longer an option, due to reports of its ineffectiveness. This means yet another shot. But when you think about how it reduces the chances of death by 65 percent, it may be well worth the 10 seconds of pain.
Though the flu vaccine isn’t 100 percent foolproof, hopefully the results of this study sway parents into getting their child vaccinated against the flu every season.