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Surgeon General Jerome Adams the American Red Cross National Headquarters on July 30. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams on Friday stressed the importance of Americans getting flu vaccines for the next influenza season, noting that the country has "been backsliding in terms of vaccine confidence over the last several years."

Why it matters: A bad flu season could put even more strain on the country's health system resources, which are especially limited in domestic coronavirus epicenters like Florida and California.

What he's saying: "This is the most important flu season that we've faced in, I'd say my lifetime. And it really is going to be important for two reasons. As you mentioned, we don't want the double whammy of our ICUs being overwhelmed with flu cases, in addition to COVID-19 cases, but we also need to socialize the idea of vaccinations," Adams said on SirusXM.

  • "We've been backsliding in terms of vaccine confidence over the last several years. We almost lost our measles eradication status last year as a country."
  • "So we really need to understand that 50% of adults slightly under that get their flu vaccine in any given year. ... And if we have that level of compliance for COVID vaccine, then it doesn't matter how effective or how safe this vaccine is, it's still not going to help us stop this outbreak."
  • "And I am hopeful. I'm hopeful that because of coronavirus, we may actually see vaccine uptake increase across the country, particularly for vaccinations like the flu vaccine."

Go deeper: How to avoid dueling outbreaks of coronavirus and flu

Go deeper

Updated 15 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Health: CDC director defends agency's response to pandemic — CDC warns highly transmissible coronavirus variant could become dominant in U.S. in March.
  2. Politics: Empire State Building among hundreds to light up in Biden inauguration coronavirus tribute.
  3. Vaccine: Fauci: 100 million doses in 100 days is "absolutely" doable.
  4. Economy: Unemployment filings explode again.
  5. Tech: Kids' screen time sees a big increase.
Nov 15, 2020 - World

Mexico tops 1 million coronavirus cases, as death toll nears 100,000

A sign above crowds of people in a street in Mexico City, Mexico, warning to "avoid masses" and keep distance from others during a nationwide, 12-day shopping event that's running through Nov. 20, designed to stimulate the economy. Photo: Cristopher Rogel Blanquet/Getty Images

Mexico surpassed 1 million coronavirus cases and over 98,200 deaths from COVID-19 late Saturday, per Johns Hopkins data.

Driving the news: Mexican health officials have focused on testing the seriously ill and conducted only about 2.5 million COVID-19 tests in total — representing 1.9% of the population, AP reports.

Nov 14, 2020 - Health

Austria announces nationwide lockdown as COVID-19 cases soar

Austria's Chancellor Sebastian Kurz hold a news confernce in Vienna. Photo: Herbert Neubauer/APA/AFP via Getty Images

Austria will impose a nationwide lockdown on Tuesday, Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said Saturday, after a nighttime curfew and partial shutdown failed to control the country's surge in coronavirus cases.

Why it matters: Austria is experiencing an average of 7,000 new COVID-19 cases a day, Kurz tweeted on Saturday. The nation confirmed a record 9,586 new virus cases on Friday, per Reuters.