vaccine en Should Unvaccinated Kids Stay Home? <p>That depends on your priorities. But first, <strong>here's what's at issue:</strong></p> Tue, 28 Jan 2014 18:18:42 +0000 Kristin Gourlay 28278 at Should Unvaccinated Kids Stay Home? Flu Spreads In Rhode Island, Hospitalizations Increase <p>While the flu is now widespread in Massachusetts, it’s still sporadic in Rhode Island. But 16 Rhode Islanders have already been hospitalized, and officials expect the number of cases to spike.</p><p>Health department officials say so far there have been no flu deaths, but in past years flu has killed well over a hundred people in Rhode Island. They say one of this year’s dominant strains in Rhode Island and nationally is H1N1, but that’s also one of the strains this year’s vaccine protects against.&nbsp;</p> Tue, 31 Dec 2013 16:38:45 +0000 Kristin Gourlay 27019 at Flu Spreads In Rhode Island, Hospitalizations Increase Miriam Hospital Trials C.Diff Vaccine <p>C. Difficile is a highly contagious infection people can catch in hospitals or after taking antibiotics. It sickens many and kills about 14,000 people every year. But there’s hope for preventing these infections as a new vaccine moves into the clinical trial phase. The Miriam Hospital is participating in the trial.</p> Fri, 27 Dec 2013 11:00:00 +0000 Kristin Gourlay 26759 at Vaccines: Are You Hiding In The Herd? <p>Herd, as in "herd immunity," the concept being that the majority of vaccinated people protect the minority who aren't vaccinated, a kind of safety-in-numbers for your immune system. But what if the number in the minority starts to creep up?</p> Tue, 12 Nov 2013 17:51:32 +0000 Kristin Gourlay 24690 at Vaccines: Are You Hiding In The Herd? Flu Vaccine Less Effective but Still Urged for Seniors <p>The U.S. Centers for Disease Control <a href="">estimates </a>this year’s flu vaccine was effective about fifty percent of the time. But the vaccine was much less protective for older adults.</p><p>The CDC found that vaccinations against influenza types A and B were about 56 percent effective overall. But in people aged 65 and older, the vaccines only worked 27 percent of the time. But Rhode Island Department of Health director Doctor Michael Fine says that’s no reason NOT to get vaccinated.</p> Fri, 22 Feb 2013 20:23:48 +0000 Kristin Gourlay 10817 at Flu in Rhode Island: How bad is it? <p>If you've got the flu, it's bad. Awfully bad. But is this season any worse than unusual? Are hospitals really being overwhelmed by "skyrocketing" cases in an unprecedented outbreak?</p> Fri, 11 Jan 2013 18:29:35 +0000 Kristin Gourlay 7547 at What’s the Plan for Whooping Cough? <p>I <a href="">blogged </a>earlier this summer about a pertussis (whooping cough) outbreak in Rhode Island and a growing number of cases throughout the country (see the <a href="">latest </a>from the RI Dept. of Health). There were some indications then that the vaccine was losing its efficacy. But that may not be the full picture.</p> Fri, 17 Aug 2012 04:00:00 +0000 Kristin Gourlay & Kristin 8311 at