Minnesota official urges vaccinations as flu season ramps up

Published 2:25 pm Saturday, January 7, 2017

ST. PAUL — A Minnesota state health official is urging residents to get vaccinated for the flu amid concern that low vaccination rates can lead to more hospitalizations and deaths.

Minnesota Department of Health epidemiologist Karen Martin said it’s disappointing that surveys show only about 40 percent of people nationwide had been vaccinated by November. She said she worries the vaccination rates can impact future flu vaccine manufacturing because of low demand.

Martin’s comments come as Minnesota and neighboring states begin to see an increase in the number of flu cases.

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Martin said it’s not too late to get a flu shot because multiple strains of the virus can be circulating as late as May.