Fewest Pediatric Deaths Reported in Years From Influenza
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported Influenza-Associated Pediatric Mortality data as of September 10, 2021. There were no influenza-associated pediatric deaths reported to the CDC during week #35.
In total, there has been (1) influenza-associated pediatric death during the 2020-2021 flu season reported to CDC.
This good news compares with the past flu seasons, which are as follows:
- 2019-2020 = 198 deaths
- 2018-2019 = 144 deaths
- 2017-2018 = 188 deaths
Research suggests three variables could be influencing the reduction of pediatric fatalities related to influenza in 2021, such as the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, reduction in circulating influenza viruses, and/or more effective flu vaccines for children.
For example, during week #35, only twenty positive Influenza Positive Test results out of 31,000 samples were reported to the CDC by U.S. Clinical Laboratories.
The CDC says for the 2021-2022 flu season, most children over the age of 6-months should receive an influenza vaccination. And there are various types of flu shots offered for children, which are highlighted on this webpage.
Furthermore, children have expanded access to flu shots in most states, with pharmacies now offering expanded immunization services.
Most importantly, the CDC says that influenza vaccines do not cause seasonal flu since they are made with either killed or weakened influenza viruses.
Regarding COVID-19 vaccines, the CDC updated its website on August 31, 2021, to say, 'Although data are not available for COVID-19 vaccines administered simultaneously with other vaccines, extensive experience with non-COVID-19 vaccines has demonstrated that immunogenicity and adverse event profiles are generally similar when vaccines are administered simultaneously as when they are administered alone.'
However, 'No data are currently available concerning coadministration of COVID-19 vaccines and influenza vaccines,' stated Lisa Grohskopf, M.D., MPH, ACIP vaccine committee presentation (slide #14) on June 24, 2021.