Samoa reports increase in influenza amongst children

The Director General of the Ministry of Health Aiono Dr. Alec Ekeroma confirmed this in a press conference where he also expressed his concern about the increased number of children affected with type B flu reports Tala Fou.

He said about 3 months ago a total of 1200 children were infected, however he said in comparison to 3 or 4 weeks ago the number has jumped to 250 children reported to the hospital per day.

He further said that in March, 1,915 children were reported to the clinic, but just last week the number has increased to 2,441

Influenza spreading in Samoa

The Ministry said the flu viruses are contagious with symptoms including fever, runny nose, dry cough, sore throat, headache, muscle and joint pain, and a general feeling of unwellness and fatigue.

It said that in June there was a surge in cases of the common flu - noticeably up on the previous two years.

The Ministry said most people recover within a week but the flu can cause severe illness or death, particularly among young children, the elderly, pregnant women, and those with serious medical conditions.

Why flu shots fail even when the match is right

A study published Wednesday in the journal Science Translational Medicine examines the question: Why did one vaccine offer 35% less protection against the flu?

The less-effective vaccine failed to activate dendritic cells, which are key to the immune system's defense, the researchers discovered, and it failed to stimulate an early immune response.