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Kids at risk after mismatch in flu shot this season


TAMPA (WFLA/CNN) – This year’s flu vaccine is “not a very good match” for a common strain of the flu that’s especially tough on children, according to the nation’s top infectious disease doctor.

Doctor Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases says children are particularly susceptible to influenza B/Victoria and that this year’s flu vaccine isn’t a very good match for it.

Fauci says even though it’s not a good match for B/Victoria, a flu shot can still save a child’s life.

According to CDC data released last week if your child is exposed to B/Victoria, there’s a 58-percent chance that their flu shot will be well matched to protect against it.

Fauci says the vaccine is, however, “a really good match” for that strain, called H1N1.

He’s spearheading an effort to develop a universal flu vaccine that would theoretically cover every strain of the flu over multiple flu seasons.

The CDC reports that 32 children have died from the flu this season including two in Pinellas County.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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