Flu Vaccine Information! When? Where? Why?

Posted in Community Programs



Flu Vaccine Information!   When?  Where?   Why?

“Influenza immunization and careful handwashing are
the best ways to prevent influenza.”

 

The Medical Health Officer answers your questions

 

Question:
Is seasonal influenza a serious disease?

Answer:
Yes. Seasonal influenza is a serious disease caused by a virus. It is much worse than the common cold and it is not the ‘stomach flu’. Seasonal influenza can cause serious illness and may result in pneumonia and death.

Question:
Who should get seasonal influenza vaccine?

Answer:
Seasonal influenza vaccine will be available free of charge through public health influenza clinics. Influenza vaccine is especially encouraged for the following high risk groups:

•  Adults 65 years of age or over,

•  People with chronic health conditions or severe obesity,

•  Residents of a nursing home or other care facility,

•  Pregnant women in any trimester and members of the same household,

•  Children aged six months to under 5 years of age,

•  Contacts of the individuals listed above,

•  Contacts of infants less than six months of age,

•  Any health care worker or care provider,

•  Any volunteer in a health care setting.

 

Question:
Why do I need to receive the seasonal influenza vaccine every year?

Answer:
The reason you need to be immunized each year is because the virus and vaccine may change each year. Also, the immunity you gain from the vaccine only lasts 4 - 6 months.


Question:
Is the seasonal influenza vaccine safe?

Answer:
Yes. The vaccine has been proven safe. It helps your immune system make antibodies to fight this year’s seasonal influenza virus.

Question:
Can you get seasonal influenza from the vaccine?

Answer:
No. The flu vaccine can not cause flu illness. Although the nasal spray vaccine contains live viruses, the viruses are weakened, and therefore, can not cause flu illness.

Question:
How does the vaccine help?

Answer:
The vaccine can prevent seasonal influenza in healthy people who are immunized. For most others, it reduces the seriousness of the disease. The vaccine does not prevent the common cold.

 

Question:
Does the vaccine cause reactions?

Answer:
The vaccine has few side effects and most people have no reaction at all. Moderate or severe reactions are rare. Some may have slight soreness in the arm. For more information, talk to a public health nurse, nurse practitioner or your doctor.

Question:
Is it true that I can have influenza without symptoms and that I could still spread the disease to others?

Answer:
Yes. You may have influenza without becoming ill. You could still spread the disease to family, friends and co-workers.
 
  Seasonal influenza vaccine is provided free of charge.

 www.rqhealth.ca


Comments