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Nurses can also get vaccinated themselves, and wear a badge advertising this; patients may feel reassured their trusted health care professional also gets vaccinated against the flu.

Mississippi's first laboratory-confirmed case of flu was reported Tuesday, and it is now all the more important to make sure your entire family gets their flu shots if they have not already, said Dr. Dobbs. "We are fortunate to have a vaccine to help us in the fight against this deadly disease".

In addition to getting vaccinated, residents are reminded to protect others by remembering to cover your cough, wash your hands frequently and stay home if you are ill.

"That's the strain that's a little bit better match to our vaccine", he said. Policies regarding the flu vaccine vary from organization to organization.

Flu vaccines are not 100% effective, and sometimes the strain of flu circulating is not a ideal match for the flu strains in the flu vaccine. What's more, the so-called seasonal vaccine isn't particularly effective, with only 20% to 60% of people who receive it dodging illness because their immune systems have been properly trained. It's a complex process and can take several months to research and then manufacture the vaccine.

Mitchell says because she had never been prone to illness, she didn't get a flu shot.

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"The flu should not be taken lightly". The vaccine is mandatory for service members and strongly encouraged for all other beneficiaries.

Those at highest risk for having complications from the flu include children under 5 years old, people 65 years and older, pregnant women, and people of any age with certain chronic medical conditions, such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease. "This also helps to stop the spread of flu" said Mayer.

Restrictions also apply to other units where intensive-care unit and oncology patients are being treated. Who is at the highest risk for having complications from it?

As of mid-November, only 43% of surveyed people 18 or older said they had gotten vaccinated against the flu, according to NORC, which has conducted the National Immunization Survey for the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention since 2005.

Even if they do as they intend, that leaves considerably more than a third of adults (41%) who have not - and will not - get a flu shot, according to NORC. People with compromised immunity. The top reasons show concern over the vaccine's side effects and efficacy.

In 2008, New Jersey's Public Health Council issued a compulsory flu vaccination for all children before entering preschools and daycare centers.