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Key messages

Influenza affects many people every winter
Influenza is a contagious disease with sometime serious outcomes. However it is often preventable. Understanding how it infects and how one can prevent infection and disease is key to reducing the number of illnesses, hospitalisations and premature deaths.
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Influenza Remains a Threat
nnual influenza epidemics are associated with high morbidity and mortality. ECDC estimates that on average nearly 40,000 people die prematurely each year from influenza in the EU. For each death there are many more hospitalisations resulting from complications.
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Prevention makes a difference
Flu transmits easily from person to person. It does this through the air or from contaminated hands or surfaces. The risk of getting or causing infection is easily reduced by following some simple logical rules of prevention. Immunisation in particular decreases the risk of a person being infected. Hence proper use of flu vaccines is the most effective form of protection of the individual.
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© European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) 2005 - 2015