Each year, influenza kills more Canadians than all other vaccine-preventable illnesses combined.
British Columbians can get immunized at a wide variety of locations – from dedicated flu clinics to doctors’ offices and local pharmacies.
Flu shots are free in B.C. for all children between six months and five years, seniors 65 years and older, pregnant women, Aboriginal people, and individuals with chronic health conditions or compromised immune systems.
Individuals who work or live with people who have a higher risk of complications from the flu are also eligible for a free flu shot.
For the second year, the South Cariboo clinics will also be offering a live attenuated influenza vaccine (Flu Mist), given as an intranasal spray. The nasal Flu Mist will be offered to children and adolescents from two to 17 years.
It is the preferred vaccine for children because it provides better protection than the inactivated influenza vaccine, or flu shot, given by injection.
For the second consecutive year, anyone planning to visit a loved one in a health-care facility or those who take family members to outpatient appointments will also be eligible for a free flu shot from a licensed practitioner, such as a pharmacist, doctor or nurse.
To find the nearest flu shot clinic, visit www. interiorhealth.ca; click on the website address, which takes you to the home page, and then click on “Find a Local Flu Clinic” that pops up another page. Then type in the name of your community and click on the search button.
This website has a lot of other good information regarding the flu season.
Local pharmacies also offer flu shots for folks who are not eligible for the free vaccinations.