Turns out practically nobody dies from the flu:
"Over a period of 30 years, between 1976 and 2006, estimates of flu-associated deaths in the United States range from a low of about 3,000 to a high of about 49,000 people."Somebody should check my calculator skills, but using 250,000,000 as the figure for U.S. population I get:
Key Facts about Influenza (Flu) & Flu Vaccine
Estimated number of flu fatalities per year: 100 to 1,633
Estimated percent flu fatalities per year: 0.00004% to 0.0007%
I don't know whether the CDC publishes an estimate for how much these numbers were affected by flu vaccine. I'm guessing: not much, seeing as how flu shots aren't particularly effective.
Does anyone know the history of flu shots & the flu shot campaign?
Is there a good reason the entire population is urged to get a flu shot every year?
What am I missing?
For the record, I stopped getting flu shots a few years ago. It's not at all convenient for me to get a flu shot (I used to have to persuade the kids' pediatrician to give me a flu shot, too); the shots hurt; and I always get slightly sick from the shot.
Plus I usually ended up with a wicked case of the flu anyway.
I haven't had the flu since I stopped getting the shot.
Either I'm free-riding on other people's flu shots, or I'm just not getting the flu.
UPDATE: CDC writing lesson & expert raters using holistic scoring rubrics