Influenza Infection Essay

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The influenza infection has a long history of having devastating effects on people worldwide but with the discovery and use of the influenza vaccine the fatally of the influenza infection decreased. The cause of the influenza infection is a virus. The virus enters the body via droplets coughed or sneezed and inhaled by a host (Bostock-Cox, 2013). Because the virus spreads via droplets it is very easily transmitted from person to person, which can lead to epidemics and even pandemics. In addition, the influenza virus is capable of mutating. The World Health Organization is responsible for tracking influenza virus changes and outbreaks around the world (Bostock-Cox, 2013). When referring to outbreaks in influenza infection the term epidemic is …show more content…

The most recent influenza pandemic that has affected the world occurred in 2009. In 2009 the “Swine flu” had a mortality rate of almost half a million people worldwide (Bostock-Cox, 2013). Unlike most yearly epidemics the “Swine flu” pandemic mostly affected persons under the age of 65. It was estimated that 87% of the deaths related to “Swine flu” occurred in persons under the age of 65 years old compared to yearly epidemics where 90% of deaths related to influenza occurred to persons 65 years and older (Bostock-Cox, 2013). Pandemics are an enormous public health risk, however yearly epidemics pose a similar public health risk worldwide. Due to the yearly public health risk that influenza epidemics cause, The World Health Organization recommends a mixture of viruses for a yearly vaccine for the northern hemisphere based on collected information about circulating virus strains throughout the year (Bostock-Cox, 2013). The yearly mixture is announced in February to allow for production and is distributed in September to providers to administer to the public (Bostock-Cox,

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