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Flummoxing Flu News

January 28, 2020

A wave of alarming influenza announcements have hit the airwaves in recent weeks. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned we could be facing a bad flu season, with Illinois among the states with widespread flu activity. 

The CDC has since reported that this year’s vaccine is a poor match for the flu strain we are experiencing. The strain is causing severe infections in children. 

Despite the efficacy concerns of this year’s flu vaccine mix, there’s a larger problem convincing patients to get vaccinated. A recent report indicates millennials are the least likely cohort to get a flu shot, as more than half of adults in their 20s and 30s went unvaccinated this season. Many cited lack of time or that they simply forgot as the reason they neglected to get the shot. However, a concerning three out of five indicated familiarity with the anti-vaccination movement and agreement with some of their beliefs. 

The American Medical Association recently shared tips to help doctors improve their dialogue with patients about vaccination. Click here for the full scoop, but the AMA suggests you deliver your vaccination messages with directness, passion and identify the common gaps that steer patients away from getting the shot. For more information about communicating effectively with patients, consider accessing ISMIE’s resources on informed consent and refusal or patient communication

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