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This Year's Flu Shot Only Cut Infection Risk by Less Than Half

  • Level of protection ‘not as good as we would like’: CDC
  • Influenza remains at epidemic levels in the U.S., CDC says

Americans who rolled up their sleeves for a flu shot this year cut their chances of coming down with the aches and fever of influenza by almost half, a level of protection that is disappointing for a vaccine but still better than in some recent years.

As the virus continues to sweep across the U.S. at epidemic levels, vaccine effectiveness level was 48 percent against acute respiratory illness from the end of November through Feb. 4, according to an analysis of 3,144 people enrolled in the U.S. Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness Network.