The flu season is officially here, and the first report was released yesterday by the Government of Saskatchewan. This year, it looks like the flu season started later than it did in 2018. Last year, the flu season started on the 24th of November. This means that the highest number of cases will probably hit during the holidays.
Up until now, 183 lab-confirmed cases have already been reported, and five outbreaks in long-term care facilities. There was also one case, which resulted in ICU care.
Dr. Saqib Shahab, who is a Chief Medical Health Officer, stated that the World Health Organization has decided to include two ‘A’ strains and two ‘B’ strains in the vaccine, which works just great in Saskatchewan.
Shahab said, “We have seen that the strains that were included in the vaccine this year are those that we are seeing circulating in North America.” This is good news for those who already got their flu shots, but the severity of the case can be various from one person to another.
Flu Season Is Here Until the Mid of February
Last year, the H1N1 strain was circulating, and both children and adults had a higher susceptibility to contracting the virus. However, this year, Dr. Shahab stated that the S3N2 strain that is most predominant, which means that the flu vaccine can also be less effective.
The government has already ordered some vaccines, a total of 436,000. Up until now, about 330,000 have been administered, which brings an increase of 15% over last year’s numbers.
Due to the fact that the flu season will be here during the holidays, Dr. Shahab stated that we need to take extra precautions when we’re visiting friends and family, especially for those who are really young, and those who are over 65. The level of cautiousness should be even higher for those who are in the hospital or enduring a chronic illness. We will probably see the flu season here until mid-February, then a decrease in cases should happen.
Proper hygiene is a must – covering your mouth when you cough as well and don’t forget to wash your hands. This can prevent the spread of the flu virus. Also, if you’re dealing with the flu, try to stay home instead of going to work or to school.
As our second lead editor, Anna C. Mackinno provides guidance on the stories Great Lakes Ledger reporters cover. She has been instrumental in making sure the content on the site is clear and accurate for our readers. If you see a particularly clever title, you can likely thank Anna. Anna received a BA and and MA from Fordham University.