CDC Bans Flu Mist Nasal Spray Vaccine for Being Ineffective

The nasal spray version of the annual flu vaccine failed to protect kids again last year, the latest in a string of failures that has prompted an expert panel to recommend that doctors stop giving it to patients.

Health officials reported Wednesday that the spray performed dismally for the third straight year, while the traditional flu shot – the one that stings – worked reasonably well this winter.

“We could find no evidence (the spray) was effective,” said Dr. Joseph Bresee, a flu expert at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The product, AstraZeneca’s FluMist, was once regarded as the best vaccine for protecting children against flu. Only two years ago, officials advised doctors that whenever possible they should use FluMist on young kids instead of flu shots.

On Wednesday, a federal advisory committee on immunization voted to retract its endorsement of the vaccine after preliminary CDC study results presented to the committee showed it provided no protection from the flu strain that made most people sick last year.

Source: Associated Press, 23 June 2016.

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