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Implicit Location : Canada
Flu shot still available to residents: government
Published on January 17, 2012
The seasonal influenza vaccination is still available throughout the province, the Department of Health and Community Services reminded the public today.
The flu shot can be obtained through a family physician or a public health office.
“We are beginning to see some initial confirmed cases of influenza B in the province,” said Dr. Faith Stratton, Chief Medical Officer of Health for Newfoundland and Labrador.
“While the number of cases is low and symptoms are mild, receiving the seasonal flu shot, along with practising regular hand washing, is the most effective way to protect against influenza viruses.”
The influenza vaccine is provided at no cost for individuals at high risk for complications from influenza, including:
• Adults and children with chronic conditions requiring regular medical or hospital care such as respiratory disorders, cardiac disease, renal disease, metabolic disorders and mobility impairment;
• Persons in residential care, including residents and staff;
• Persons age 60 and over;
• Children age six months to 23 months;
• Health care workers including those in the community or chronic care facilities;
• Essential service workers (e.g. police, ambulance, firefighters);
• Aboriginal people;
• Household contacts of people at high risk of influenza complications;
• Pregnant women; and,
• Poultry and swine industry workers.
“Although the flu season often begins in the fall, Newfoundland and Labrador is now reporting its first cases,” Stratton said. “Flu symptoms include rapid onset of cough, fever, headache, chills and general body aches and pains.”
Individuals are encouraged to practise the three principles of personal hygiene, Clean, Cover and Contain, to help prevent the spread of influenza. It is recommended to practise thorough hand washing, cover coughs and sneezes, and to stay home when sick.