The last flu season was severe, but the province’s health care system is ready to combat this one, even though it’s said to be less severe than the previous one.
Last year’s flu season ended with the death of 92 people in Alberta and 32 in Calgary. According to Bruce Conway, the spokesperson of Alberta Health Services, the season was milder in the southern hemisphere.
AHS officials urge people to get vaccinated to ward off the virus. The immunization campaign will start at several clinics in four locations in Calgary.
Dr. Christopher Sikora, who is the acting senior medical officer of health for AHS, stated that:
“It is important to get immunized early in the season. You may be healthy now but without immunization, everyone is at risk. Prevention is your only protection.”
In the 2016-2017 season, Alberta had 64 fatalities and 1.653 people hospitalized.
Last season’s vaccines had an effectiveness of almost 10% because the virus mutated, but according to AHS, the medicine reduced contracting the flu by 40%.
Conway explained that this year’s vaccine would counter influenza A and B, and they don’t know yet how effective it will be:
“Time will tell in terms of efficiency. We won’t really know until closer to the end of the season.”
Sikora stated that in the last flu season, AHS had 29% Albertans vaccinated, adding that:
“Though some Albertans are at greater risk of severe complications, no one is naturally immune to influenza.”
AHS Flu Clinics – Open on Monday
According to the Calgary Herald, the flu shots will be available at pharmacies or the doctors’ offices. There will also be four AHS flu clinics in the city at the follwowing addresses:
“Brentwood Village Mall; 302 – 3630 Brentwood Road N.W.
Northgate Village Shopping Centre; 495 – 36th St. N.E.
Richmond Road Diagnostic Centre; 1820 Richmond Rd. S.W.
South Calgary Health Centre; 31 Sunpark Plaza S.E.”
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