FRASER Health is encouraging people in its communities to use all their defences and get vaccinated against influenza (“the flu”) and COVID-19 to protect themselves, their loved ones, and those most at risk of developing severe illness.
Fraser Health on Thursday launched its annual influenza vaccine campaign to raise awareness about the importance of getting the influenza shot.
“As we continue to see COVID-19 impact our communities and the health care system, it’s even more important to get immunized against influenza and COVID-19 and continue to apply other COVID-19 safety measures such as practicing physical distancing, wearing a mask, washing your hands often, and staying home when sick,” stressed Fraser Health.
It added: “We know the majority of people have received their COVID-19 vaccine, but as respiratory viruses continue to circulate, we want to ensure that people also get the influenza vaccine to stay protected from influenza. Influenza vaccines are safe, effective and recommended for everyone in B.C. six months of age and older. As of this year, getting the influenza vaccine is free of charge for everyone in B.C. six months of age and older.”
You can get your free influenza vaccine through your family doctor, local pharmacist or one of our public health influenza clinics. Check the BC Flu Clinic Locator for clinic locations and times. Booked family influenza clinics are available through Public Health for children six months to eight years (inclusive) and their immediate household members.
This year, the intranasal influenza vaccine, FluMist Quadrivalent is available to eligible children age two to seventeen. The nasal spray vaccine will be available at public health units, some pharmacies and some doctors’ offices.
Influenza is a virus that causes infection of the respiratory system, and can lead to symptoms of fever, headache, fatigue, muscle aches, and cough. Everybody is at risk of influenza, and it can be mild, moderate or severe. Severe disease and complications from influenza, such as pneumonia, are more common in the very young, the elderly, those with heart, lung or other chronic health conditions, indigenous people, and pregnant people. Influenza is easily spread from person to person, and an infected person can spread the virus a day before they are even sick with symptoms.
For Fraser Health information about influenza and COVID-19, visit fraserhealth.ca/defence