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Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:43 PM

Don't be selfish: Get a flu shot and protect the most vulnerable, bioethicist says

http://vitals.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/11/16467506-dont-be-selfish-get-a-flu-shot-and-protect-the-most-vulnerable-bioethicist-says?lite


The best defense we have against the flu is a shot. Still, some people resist getting one. Some say they just don't work that well. Others have concerns about the contents of the vaccine. Others just think the shots aren't that necessary and they'd rather take their chances and power through the flu if they get sick. But here's the thing: a flu shot isn't just for you -- it's also for those around you.

For those who still say the flu isnít really serious, consider the death toll so far -- Minnesota has had 27 flu-related deaths reported; Pennsylvania 22; Massachusetts, 18; Oklahoma, 8 and Illinois, 6. Nine nursing home residents have died in New York. Twenty infants and children have died nationwide. And those are just the confirmed flu death cases. When someone starts to go on about the risks and dangers of flu shots a quick visit to the morgue should suffice to shut them up.
Things are only going to get worse. We are barely half way through the flu season. It's a nasty flu, making healthy people very sick and sick people in need of intensive care or worse.

This year the efficacy of the flu shot is about 62 percent. That is not a great number, but it is not bad. It's still worth getting one. The ethical reasons go far beyond your personal self-interest.
First, you ought to get a flu shot in order to protect those who cannot benefit from them. Second, the more folks who get vaccinated the harder it is for the flu to spread. Flu vaccination does a community a lot of good.

Newborns and those who are immune-compromised due to diseases, transplants, or cancer therapies cannot benefit from flu shots ó they lack enough immunity capability. The elderly donít build as much resistance to flu from a shot as do the young. And fetuses are at risk of dying from the flu unless their mothers get a shot.

The best protection those in these high-risk groups have is for those they come in contact with to have been vaccinated. Doing the right thing means protecting your grandma, your neighborís new baby and your sonís friend with primary immunodeficiency disease from being infected by -- you. You may not die from the flu. They could.

In addition to protecting those who cannot protect themselves there is strength in numbers in flu vaccination. The more of us who get vaccinated, even with a less than perfect vaccine, the harder it is for the flu virus to spread. This is called "herd immunity" and it applies to people as well as animals. If you think of yourself as a good neighbor and a responsible member of your community then you ought to get a shot so everyone gets the maximum benefit.

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Arrow 17 replies Author Time Post
Reply Don't be selfish: Get a flu shot and protect the most vulnerable, bioethicist says (Original post)
littlemissmartypants Jan 2013 OP
Skittles Jan 2013 #1
NYC_SKP Jan 2013 #2
nadinbrzezinski Jan 2013 #3
SunSeeker Jan 2013 #4
june starling Jan 2013 #6
june starling Jan 2013 #5
ChisolmTrailDem Jan 2013 #7
SunSeeker Jan 2013 #8
new cappie moon Jan 2013 #10
SunSeeker Jan 2013 #13
new cappie moon Jan 2013 #11
LAGC Jan 2013 #15
trotsky Jan 2013 #9
sendero Jan 2013 #12
Nolimit Jan 2013 #14
smirkymonkey Jan 2013 #16
TheKentuckian Jan 2013 #17

Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:55 PM

1. cue the excuses

3, 2, 1..........

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Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:55 PM

2. K/R (nt)

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Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:57 PM

3. I get it every year

My husband does not...due to reaction to it while in the Navy.

He is among a minority of people, and trust me, it's a small group, that shoud not.

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Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)

Sat Jan 12, 2013, 01:17 AM

4. I get a flu shot for me and my kid.

I got mine in October; do it every year. I've got a 9-year-old, and I get him a flu shot every year too. My husband, on the other hand, has never gotten a flu shot and refuses to get one for reasons he can't really articulate, other than that he doesn't need one. I guess me and my son getting one does protect my husband!

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Response to SunSeeker (Reply #4)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 02:46 PM

6. From all varieties? And the super bugs morphing due to people like you????!!!

 

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Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)


Response to june starling (Reply #5)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 02:53 PM

7. Looks like you didn't bother to get your pizza vaccination. eom

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Response to ChisolmTrailDem (Reply #7)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 03:33 PM

8. LOL nt

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Response to SunSeeker (Reply #8)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 03:58 PM

10. Yeah, it's a real hoot, ain't it?

 



The fascism is everywhere but too many awakened ones will tell "them" to take their live virus and stick it!

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Response to new cappie moon (Reply #10)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 04:02 PM

13. Go away, troll. nt

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Response to ChisolmTrailDem (Reply #7)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 03:58 PM

11. How's your mama doing?

 

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Response to ChisolmTrailDem (Reply #7)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 04:09 PM

15. And librarygirl strikes yet again!

Woosh! Back to ASAH with you!

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Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 03:46 PM

9. Getting the vaccine, even if you are young and healthy or "never get sick"...

is the responsible, PROGRESSIVE thing to do. Help minimize the risk for others. That's a big part of what being liberal is all about: thinking of others instead of just yourself. But that's what is so cool about vaccines: they benefit you, too!

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Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 04:01 PM

12. I would love to get a flu shot..

... but one of the questions they ask you is "have you ever had Guillan-Barre syndrome" and I have to say yes.

Otherwise, I don't know why anyone wouldn't get one.

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Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 04:05 PM

14. I got my shot and still got the flu

Go figure.

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Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 04:13 PM

16. I got mine at work on Friday. I felt it was the responsible thing to do.

There is one person (that I know of) at work who refused to get one for some bizarre reason. She thinks it unhealthy or something. I just hope she stays home if she does come down with something and doesn't come in to infect everyone else.

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Response to littlemissmartypants (Original post)

Sun Jan 13, 2013, 06:02 PM

17. Meh...got it this year and was sick as a dog, I assume from a separate strand that wasn't included.

The first time I got it, my reaction was to get sick as I've ever been including pneumonia.

It might be the best defense we have but it isn't that tough or reliable. Personal experience indicates it makes it seem like it makes it worse.

I'll probably keep trying it but the outcomes haven't inspired confidence so far. I almost put a lifetime ban on the practice after that first go around so I'm far from comfortable despite the merits espoused.

If I keep getting miserably sick taking it, I'm comfortable with telling whoever to kiss my ass.

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