ATLANTA (February 21, 2013)--This season's flu vaccine is only 9 percent effective in protecting seniors against the most common and dangerous flu bug, health officials say.
Flu vaccine tends to protect younger people better than older ones and is never 100 percent effective, but experts said the preliminary results released Thursday are disappointing and highlight the need for a better vaccine.
For all age groups, the vaccine's effectiveness was a moderate 56 percent, but it did a particularly poor job of protecting those 65 and older against a harsh flu strain that is causing most of the illnesses this year.
Health officials emphasized that some protection though is better than none at all.
The flu season started early this year but the worst of it is over.