The Australian Department of Health assessed vaccine effectiveness and found that the 2017 flu shot provided “low” protection (33%) against H3N2 while providing “moderate” protection against the other circulating viruses (50% or more). “This year in the US, you have a cell-derived H3 vaccine” being given to people, Barr said. Scientists will collect new empirical data on how effective this cell-based vaccine is in real world conditions and be able to compare it with the traditional egg-based vaccine. Meanwhile, Fauci has made developing a new flu vaccine “the top priority” of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. He wants to oversee the creation of a universal flu vaccine.Follow CNN Health on Facebook and Twitter

“We really need to graduate into the 21st century and do two things,” he said: First, we need to use molecular biological techniques to develop a vaccine and “get away from having to grow it in eggs.” Secondly, we need to “step up our efforts — scientifically and otherwise — to develop a universal flu vaccine.” “Namely, a vaccine that induces a response against the part of the virus that doesn’t change from season to season or from strain to strain,” Fauci said. “So that you don’t have to worry about these drifts that continually make our vaccine less than optimal.”