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|Yet the most compelling reason to get a flu shot this year is a new and deadly threat — methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, a dangerous kind of staph that has been causing outbreaks of deadly pneumonia among the otherwise young and healthy, typically on the heels of the flu.
Unfortunately, we have no practical way to eradicate MRSA. About a third of us silently carry staph at any given time, and trying to eradicate MRSA or any other staph strain from a community of symptom-free carriers is difficult to impossible. Worse, the experts conclude, any widespread effort to do so is certain to breed greater drug resistance.
Flu shots don’t guarantee protection from MRSA pneumonia. It can piggyback on other kinds of viral respiratory infections. But protecting yourself and your children from the flu may be the best way to reduce your family’s risk.
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