Island Health braces for flu season

The health authority has ordered 268,700 doses of flu vaccine this year

Island Health is gearing up for the flu season, and expects more people than ever to get vaccinated this year.

The health authority has ordered 268,700 doses of flu vaccine this year, up 25,750 doses from last year. Pharmacies and doctors’ offices have also ordered vaccine.

Last year the province faced a shortage of flu vaccine.

“Planning ahead and getting your flu shot early is an important way to protect yourself and the people in your life who are vulnerable to complications from influenza,” said Dr. Dee Hoyano, medical health officer for Island Health.

Physicians, pharmacists and Island Health Public Health units will be providing free flu shots to people at high risk of complications from influenza and their close contacts as well as other eligible groups in communities across the Island.

Free immunization clinics offered by Island Health begin next week.

Those who are not eligible for the free vaccine are encouraged to get vaccinated by their family physician or pharmacist for a nominal cost.

Last week, Island Health began immunizing health-care workers. In 2013, more than 70 per cent of health-care workers on the Island received a flu shot.

Sarah Plank, Island Health media manager, said the health authority hopes to increase the immunization rate among health-care workers and the general public.

Getting more people immunized would help already busy hospitals from being overloaded during the flu season.

“It can be a very serious illness and lead to death and hospitalization,” Plank said. “It puts a lot of pressure on our hospitals and emergency departments.”

Flu season usually begins in December and runs through April, but there are some indications, the season could start earlier this year.

For up to date information about Island Health’s Public Health flu clinic dates and times, residents are encouraged to go online to viha.ca/flu.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just Posted

Transportation Safety Board’s out-of-date data system makes it hard to track trends

An upgrade to the system will be coming in the next fiscal year

Canadian Armed Forces to change approach to sexual assault investigations

New program aimed at a more open and transparent process, will consult with civilians, health and law professionals

UPDATED: West Shore RCMP officer cleared in Goldstream trestle death

Independent Investigation Office of BC issues final report

Unique technology gives children with special needs more independent play

UVic’s CanAssist refined seven prototypes aided by $1.5M government contribution

Elections BC keeps eye on Canada Post dispute, but no change in Nov. 30 deadline

Vote No spokesman say an extension of one or two weeks would ensure all ballots are counted

Langley school pulls Japanese ‘rising sun’ flag after student petition

School district promises consultation with students and parents, defends using flag for war history

Calgary bobsled death inquiry recommends infrared technology, safety audits

A judge found the deaths of 17-year-old twins Evan and Jordan Caldwell were accidental and caused by blunt-force head and neck trauma

First ski hill in B.C. opened this weekend

Sun Peaks, near Kamloops, was the first ski hill in the province to open for season

$50k fine and community service for Vancouver Island tax evader

David Gonyea was given a nine-month conditional sentence

Paved Pacific Rim National Park trail costs balloon to $51 million

Feds kick in an additional $17 million to complete trail running between Tofino and Ucluelet

Island connection to launch of new $10 bill

Great nephew of Viola Desmond says bill is a ‘step in the right direction’

B.C. fire chief learns from California fires

Chief Travis Whiting and Kelowna Fire Department learn from the devasting U.S. fires

Most Read