Influenza Facts


  • Influenza is the sixth leading cause of death among American adults.
  • Each year, about 36,000 people die from influenza, and 114,000 people are hospitalized.
  • Influenza is a highly contagious disease that is spread by coughing, sneezing and through direct physical contact with objects that carry the virus such as doorknobs and telephones.
  • Symptoms of influenza include fever, extreme fatigue, headache and body aches; about 50% of infected people have no symptoms but are still contagious.
  • Immunization is 70-90% effective in preventing influenza in health people under the age of 65.
  • The influenza vaccine cannot cause influenza.
  • New variants of influenza arise each year and therefore a new vaccine must be made and given each year.