Published: Fri, December 08, 2017
Medicine | By Brett Sutton

Health officials: Flu shot may only be 10% effective this season

Health officials: Flu shot may only be 10% effective this season

The Minister told a press conference in Accra that "Following the review of the case definition, appropriate samples (throat swabs) were taken and immediately sent to Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research and Kumasi Center for Collaborative Research for laboratory investigations. So unless we investigate that, and know exactly what is the cause of death, it is not good to speculate".

The announcement follows a week of panic at the Kumasi-based school after a number of students reported sudden acute respiratory difficulties and were admitted to the KNUST Hospital. It can affect one's upper respiratory system, which starts at the sinuses and ends at the vocal chords.

"Of the nineteen (19) samples sent to NOGUCHI twelve (12) tested Positive for Influenza Type-A".

The tests became necessary following what many have called mysterious deaths involving four students of the school in the past week.


Several students are also on admission, whereas the whole student population have been administered with antibiotics as part of a prophylaxis. Reports from Australia have caused mounting concern, with record-high numbers of laboratory-confirmed influenza notifications and outbreaks and higher-than-average numbers of hospitalizations and deaths and that the vaccine, which is similar to the one being used in the USA had only a 10 percent effectiveness. The dominant flu virus strain is H3N2, which can result in more severe illnesses than other strains.

Yearly flu vaccinations help protect individuals from influenza.

The more people who get vaccinated, the more people will be protected from flu, including older people, very young children, pregnant women, and people with certain long-term health conditions who are more vulnerable to serious flu complications.

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