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Media Advisory

CDC Urges Older Adults 65 Years and Older to Get Vaccinated During National Influenza Vaccination Week

For Immediate Release: December 9, 2010
Contact: CDC Media Relations
(404) 639-3286

WHAT

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has designated Thursday, December 9 of National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW) as Older Adults Vaccination Day to urge people 65 years and older to get vaccinated. People age 65 and older are at greater risk of serious flu-related complications (like pneumonia) and have some of the highest rates of hospitalization and death from the flu, especially when compared with young, healthy adults because the body's ability to fight illness weakens with age.

CDC is partnering with various national and grassroots organizations to ensure that older adults understand that flu is a serious disease and that vaccination is the best protection for against flu and flu-related complications.

WHEN

Thursday, December 9, 2010 – Older Adults Vaccination Day

WHY

Each year about 9 out of 10 seasonal flu–related deaths and more than 6 out of 10 seasonal flu-related hospital stays in the United States occur in people 65 years and older.

BACKGROUND

Influenza (the flu) is a serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death. The first and most important step in protecting against the flu is to get a flu vaccine each season, especially before the traditional winter peak in flu activity. For a complete listing of NIVW activities—and details on the seasonal flu—visit www.flu.gov/getvaccinated.

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