According to a new study published only yesterday in PLOS Currents: Influenza, climate change is quite likely to foster more severe flu seasons.
Furthermore, the study claims that the global shifts in weather patterns will also toy with the flu seasons' onset, meaning that this medical condition could soon debut earlier than it currently does.
The specialists who looked into this issue were led by Sherry Towers, a researcher currently working with the Arizona State University's Mathematical, Computational and Modeling Sciences Center.
According to Newswise, Sherry Towers and his team have reached these troubling conclusions regarding the onset and the severity of future flu seasons after analyzing data provided by the Centers for Disease Control in the United States.
The data these specialists have analyzed basically referred to how and when various waves of influenza hit said country from 1997-1998 until present day.
When comparing this information to climate patterns recorded within the same time frame, Sherry Towers and his team have discovered that warm winters and heavy flu seasons are very much intertwined.
Given the fact that higher average winter temperatures are part and parcel of phenomena such as climate change and global warming, it need not surprise us that these researchers now fear that, as global weather patterns continue to change for the worse, so will flu seasons.
As Sherry Towers puts it, “It appears that fewer people contract influenza during warm winters, and this causes a major portion of the population to remain vulnerable into the next season, causing an early and strong emergence.”
“And when a flu season begins exceptionally early, much of the population has not had a chance to get vaccinated, potentially making that flu season ever worse.”
Following their reaching these conclusions, the researchers recommend that the country's high officials take appropriate measures so as to make sure that vaccines are manufactured and distributed more efficiently.
Furthermore, they recommend that the country implement more aggressive vaccination programs.