Vaccine News & Notes — February 2018

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Parents PACK

The vaccine pioneer who predicted — and curbed — a global influenza pandemic

Dr. Maurice Hilleman is credited with saving 8 million lives per year because he helped invent nine of the 14 childhood vaccines kids receive today. Yet his accomplishments with another vaccine, for influenza, are equally remarkable. As detailed in an article by VEC Director, Dr. Paul Offit, Hilleman forecasted the influenza pandemic of 1957 and was able to quickly spur production of a targeted influenza vaccine that helped prevent catastrophic loss of life. A segment of the award-winning documentary HILLEMAN: A Perilous Quest to Save the World’s Children explains in more detail.

What you should know about flu antiviral drugs

With the prevalence of influenza across the United States, you may have heard reference made to antiviral drugs that can be used to combat the illness. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides a series of questions and answers related to antiviral drugs and their role in treating influenza. There’s also a downloadable PDF.

Flu is bad for business — CDC can help

The CDC estimates that influenza causes an annual economic burden of $87 billion when you consider missed work hours, hospitalizations and other factors.

Materials in this section are updated as new information and vaccines become available. The Vaccine Education Center staff regularly reviews materials for accuracy.

You should not consider the information in this site to be specific, professional medical advice for your personal health or for your family's personal health. You should not use it to replace any relationship with a physician or other qualified healthcare professional. For medical concerns, including decisions about vaccinations, medications and other treatments, you should always consult your physician or, in serious cases, seek immediate assistance from emergency personnel.