With flu season approaching, public health nurses across Interior Health are gearing up for the launch of this year’s influenza (flu) vaccination campaign that began the week of October 11. Last year, over 145,000 seasonal flu shots were provided free of charge to those at risk of complications from the flu.
“Vaccine composition is developed by the World Health Organization based on flu trends worldwide. This year’s vaccine contains three different flu strains including the H1N1 strain,” says Dr. Rob Parker, medical health officer with Interior Health. “The two most important ways to protect yourself from getting the flu are to wash your hands frequently and get your flu shot. This is especially important if you are over 65 or have a chronic health condition.”
The flu is highly contagious and can cause severe complications for those with heart, lung and other health problems. Even if you don’t become severely ill, getting the flu can mean several missed days of school, work and other activities. Flu vaccinations are a proven, safe and effective way to reduce your chances of getting the flu. The flu shot also lessens the severity of symptoms for those who do get the flu.
To find a flu clinic near you, watch for local announcements on dates and times in your community, visit our website at www.interiorhealth.ca for a complete listing or contact your local Public Health office. Many physician offices and pharmacies also provide vaccines free to those who are eligible.
– Interior Health