Island Health is reminding people to get their flu shot early to help protect themselves against influenza.
Where can I get my flu shot?
Adults can get immunized through their local pharmacy or physician beginning October 8.
- Check in with your primary health-care provider or pharmacist
- Visit immunizebc.ca/clinics/flu/ or
- Call HealthLink BC at 8-1-1 for locations
Families with eligible children 18 and under are invited to get a free flu shot at a public health clinic beginning October 29. They may also check with their pharmacist or physician about getting immunized.
- Visit islandfluclinics.ca to find a flu clinic near you.
Can I get a free flu shot?
Children (6 months to 5 years), seniors (65+ years), pregnant women, Aboriginal peoples, and people at high risk of complications from influenza, their close contacts and caregivers are among those eligible for a free flu shot.
- Find out if you are eligible for the free flu vaccine at islandhealth.ca/flu.
If you are not eligible, you may receive a flu vaccine for a fee through your family doctor or pharmacist.
Call one of our telephone hotlines for more information:
Courtenay/Comox Valley: 250-331-8599
Campbell River and area: 250-850-2120
Mt. Waddington/Port Hardy: 250-902-6079
South Island: 250-544-7676 local 27545
In all other areas, contact your local public health unit for flu information.
For more information, visit immunizebc.ca or call 8-1-1 to speak to a health professional.
- Influenza (the flu) is among the top ten leading causes of death in Canada, estimated to cause over 12,200 hospitalizations and 3,500 deaths annually.
- The flu is an infection of the upper airway (nose and throat) caused by the influenza virus. The flu virus spreads between people through breathing, coughing and sneezing.
- Getting vaccinated is the best protection against the flu, and complements other prevention measures, such as hand washing and staying home when sick.
- Flu symptoms include fever, headache, runny nose, sore throat, fatigue and cough.
- The term “flu” is often used to describe other illnesses, such as a cold or stomach virus. However, flu symptoms are usually prolonged and more severe than a cold and do not usually include nausea, vomiting and diarrhea (see Is it influenza or a cold? )