Fort Worth, Texas,
15:33 PM

New Study Shows Flu Vaccines Save Children’s Lives

CDC looks at more than 4 years of data for findings

A new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study confirms how important flu vaccinations are in saving children’s lives.

The study, also published by the American Academy of Pediatrics, is the first of its kind to show how flu vaccinations significantly reduce a child’s risk of dying from influenza.

For four flu season, from 2010 to 2014, the CDC found that flu vaccines reduce the risk of flu-associated death by nearly two-thirds (65 percent) among healthy kids and by 51 percent among kids with underlying high-risk medical conditions such as asthma, chronic lung disease, heart disease and weakened immune systems.

“One of the questions we hear a lot from parents is does the flu vaccine really work,” said Mary Suzanne Whitworth, M.D., medical director of Infectious Diseases at Cok Children's. “I hope this study helps parents see the real, life-saving value of the vaccinations. This report from the CDC shows us that the flu vaccine can play a major role in preventing more children dying from the flu.”

The study looked at 358 laboratory-confirmed, flu associated deaths. Of the reported pediatric deaths with known vaccination status (291), only one in four children (26 percent) had been vaccinated.

During the 2016‐2017 influenza season, 0 Tarrant County influenza‐associated pediatric deaths has been reported. As of week 12 for the 2016-2017 season, two influenza‐associated pediatric deaths have been reported in Texas, with a total of 55 reported nationwide.

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About the Source

Mary Suzanne Whitworth, M.D. is the medical director of Infectious Diseases at Cook Children’s, which offers care for children and teens with diseases caused by bacteria, parasites, fungi or viruses. Our team provides a broad range of services including diagnosis, inpatient and outpatient consultations, immune deficiency evaluations and treatment of recurring infections.

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