Friday, January 14, 2005
A little light weekend reading reveals that in 2001, only 32 Americans, ages 24 and younger, died of influenza.
And yet schools like Omaha Westside were planning to have mass vaccinations this past fall for staff, students and their families, if the supply hadn’t dried up since nobody could make any money on such a boondoggle.
Now, I’m sad that those 32 young people died. Seven of them were infants.
But this is a big country. Is it sane to be worrying about and paying for flu shots for schoolchildren the way we’ve been doing?
“Very few deaths are attributed to influenza in the population under age 55,” the report said.
And here it is, for your leisure-time pleasure:
“Trends in Pneumonia and Influenza Morbidity and Mortality,” American Lung Association, Research and Scientific Affairs, Epidemiology and Statistics Unit, August 2004.
Here’s hoping this factoid will go into someone’s boondoggle-fighting quiver for the next go-round in the important arena of school health.
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