INFLUENZA VACCINE (FLU) STANDARD DOSE
An annual flu vaccine is the best way to help protect against the flu.
What is influenza?
Influenza is an infection of the upper airway caused by the influenza virus. A person with influenza is at risk of other infections, including viral or bacterial pneumonia which is an infection of the lungs.
Influenza spreads easily from person-to-person through coughing, sneezing or face-to-face contact. The virus can also spread when a person touches tiny droplets from a cough or sneeze on another person or object and then touches their eyes, mouth or nose before washing their hands.
Flu symptoms can include:
Fever (not everyone with flu will have a fever) or feeling feverish/chills
Runny or stuffy nose
Muscle or body aches
Vomiting and/or diarrhea (this is more common in children than adults)
Most people who get sick with flu will recover in a few days to less than two weeks.
CARING FOR YOUR HEALTH
Who can get the vaccine?
Effective immediately, the Province announced it would move to universal eligibility for the publicly funded influenza vaccine meaning patients would not be required to pay for the flu shot if they do not fall into specific eligibility requirements.
People in B.C. are being encouraged to protect themselves and those around them against influenza this year by getting an influenza vaccine. This year it is especially important for people to get vaccinated.
This year, influenza vaccination is free for everyone in B.C six months and older.
Canada's National Advisory Committee on Immunization recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older should get a yearly influenza vaccination with rare exception.
Vaccination is especially important for people who are at high risk of serious illness from influenza (such as young children, pregnant women, the elderly, and people with certain medical conditions) and those able to transmit or spread influenza to those at high risk.
The vaccine is usually given as 1 dose. Children under 9 years of age who have never had a seasonal influenza vaccine need 2 doses. The second dose of vaccine is important to raise their level of protection and should be given 4 weeks after the first dose.
IT'S FLU SEASON
Ensure to get it every year
Flu viruses are constantly changing, so new vaccines are made each year to protect against the flu viruses that are likely to cause the most illness. Also, protection provided by flu vaccination wears off over time. Your flu vaccine will protect against flu all season, but you
will need a vaccine again next flu season for best protection against flu.