Although it is difficult to think about, illnesses and diseases (like the flu) are created by Mother Nature as a form of population control. This is one of the reasons that the flu mutates and changes and that every year we need to get a new flu shot to help prevent catching. The mutations and changes are part of Mother Natures creation and part of her plan to try and control our population. As of Jan. 11, 2013 the flu has lead to 6 deaths in Washington State alone but our latest vaccine does seem to be working.
It is a dark and grim thought to realize that our human population on this planet is out of control and that as our populations grow more and more diseases, viruses and illnesses come around and mutate to avoid our attempts to stop them. Of course, no one likes being sick and no one wants anyone to fall ill or die but it is part of Mother Nature. Like all mothers, Mother Nature is both our protector and our disciplinarian. She tries very hard to keep us in check and we all try very hard not to fall ill.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as our local researchers here in Washington have found that the current flu vaccine is 62% effective in preventing the flu virus this season. Considering all of Mother Natures tricks, those numbers are really in our favor. Locally, Group Health Research Institute in Seattle is one of five locations that have evaluated the vaccine. Doctor Michael L. Jackson has said “That level of effectiveness is typical for a flu vaccine during seasons when circulating viruses are mostly the same as the viruses the vaccine is designed to protect against, while the vaccine isn’t perfect, the study shows that this year’s flu vaccine offers the population substantial benefits in preventing influenza illness and related visits to the doctor. Past studies have shown other benefits of flu vaccination, including reducing illness, doctor visits, time lost from work, and hospitalizations.” Although these findings are good, keep in mind that even those that have been vaccinated can still contract the flu.
Many Pagans choose not get vaccinations like this or to vaccinate their children and that is something that is up for debate. However, some don’t respond well to vaccinations and they can actually make them ill. No matter if your going to get the shot or not, it is a good idea to make sure to take precautions. Mother Natures intention with the flu seems to be survival of the fittest and we can be the fittest if we are careful.
This years flu season started early this year in the southern states and seems to just now be reaching us in Washington. In King, Pierce and Snohomish counties 6 people have died already. In our area there were 18 flu related deaths in the 2011-2012 season, and 36 in the previous season. Be smart about the flu season, Mother Nature isn’t messing around.