Tag: #Flu

Is the flu vaccine only 12% effective?

Synopsis The flu vaccine has low effectiveness, but that effectiveness is still better than nothing It has higher effectiveness in some age groups, lower in others There was a mismatch between the most common H3N2 influenza strain and the vaccine, bringing the effectiveness lower We need better influenza vaccine technology… Like, now! Of Sacred Cows And Such I’ve told you…

We’re about to have a really bad influenza season

Today’s weekly national flu report had the following nugget of information under the virology section: “41(48%) of the 85 H3N2 viruses tested have been characterized as A/Texas/50/2012-like, the influenza A (H3N2) component of the 2014-2015 Northern Hemisphere influenza vaccine. 44 (52%) of the 85 viruses tested showed either reduced titers with antiserum produced against A/Texas/50/2012 or belonged to a genetic…

Talking Tuesday: The Influenza Kids


What happens when a group of kids with the flu comes to the United States? You’d think that there was this big, huge response with lots of doctors and nurses. Nope. There was only one outbreak, so they only needed one epidemiologist: Me.

Sit back and enjoy this mini-podcast and why I’ll never run without personal protective equipment into a building full of sick people again.

What you need to know about influenza right now

Influenza season is in full swing in the United States, with several deaths reported in different places in the country. There was even a death in Canada associated with the dreaded H5N1 strain from Asia. The six years that I spent at the health department were about 70% all about influenza surveillance, keeping everyone in the loop on where the…

Last night on “The Walking Dead”

Stop reading right this instant if you don’t want to know what happened last night on “The Walking Dead”. You’ve been warned. Stop. Okay, for the rest of you, I’m going to give you a very, very quick recap of what happened on last night’s season four premiere.

Epi Ren’s Journal Club: Bats and Flu, just what we needed

If you know me, then you’ll know that I’m a big geek when it comes to all things influenza. The virus is fascinating. It mutates often enough to stay ahead of our immune systems and ahead of the finest epidemiologists in the world. It has killed millions, and it can kill billions if the right circumstances arise. Influenza viruses can…

Interview on the radio

I did the following radio interview back in April of 2010, shortly after the 2009 influenza pandemic, for Maryland Morning. It’s ten minutes that seemed eternal to me because of the questions she threw at me. (If you don’t see the audio player to play the interview in your browser, you’ll see a download link.)


Featured image credit: Brandon Christopher Warren / Foter.com / CC BY-NC

A very quick presentation on influenza

I gave a very quick presentation today at our Zoonotic Disease Update. The presentation was on the public health response to a novel influenza virus situation. It was the first part of a two-part presentation on the H3N2v situation from last year. I didn’t record the second part. Sorry.

A couple of things about this presentation. It was short because it was the introduction to a longer presentation, and the whole program was running late. So I hurried it up a little bit. The other thing is that my grandmother passed the evening before. I was a little emotional, and I also didn’t get enough sleep. Furthermore, I wanted to mention my grandmother somehow in the presentation, so I got in a quick “joke” at the beginning. Finally, because I was short on time, I actually rushed through and you can tell that I was thinking too much where to splice what I was going to say. There’s even an awkward moment of silence.

All that said, plenty of people complimented me on the presentation, and plenty more congratulated me on my getting into the DrPH program. (The person introducing me mentioned it.) No one, however, mentioned to me that I had spilled pasta sauce all over my shirt at lunch. Oh, well.