Michigan Association of Health Plans

Doctors say influenza is on the rise and encourage everyone to get their flu vaccine immediately

This story appeared in WXYZ. Read more here.

“I’ve been getting a flu shot for at least 20 of the past years. Fortunately, I have not gotten the flu, so I do this to make sure I do this annually. It’s very effective and I would encourage anybody else that has the opportunity to do the same,” said Gregory Decker as he was getting his flu shot.

The weekly CDC flu survey – updated last Thursday – still shows Michigan in the “minimal” range of cases. But numbers are on the rise in adjoining states—Indiana is at a “moderate” level while Ohio is experiencing what the CDC describes as “high” case counts.

“It always is a concern because flu seems to move from the south to the north and we’re seeing some cases increase in the south and we’re just seeing a little bit of an increase in Influenza-A. A is the one that is more worrisome than B,” said Dr. Matthew Denenberg, Chief of Pediatrics, Beaumont Health.

Dr. Matthew Denenberg says that’s especially true for young children.

The arrival of colder weather is another concern as people spend more time inside – and with the holidays just around the corner as well.

WXYZ’s Dave LewAllen asked, “What is your best advice on how they should act to protect their kids?”

“When it comes to flu, please call your pediatrician or primary care physician or your family practitioner and make arrangements to get a flu vaccine,” said Dr. Denenberg. “In particular in pediatrics, we are below the rates of vaccination we saw pre-COVID and we’re below the 90% that we need to get to for appropriate immunity in the community so, we’ve struggled for vaccinations in general, but they’re lower this year compared to years past.”

Mr. Decker is all set now, but the concern still remains for young children, those three and under in particular, hope is that they also get flu shots, get the vaccinations so that they are safe as well.

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