Influenza flu shots to be ready starting Oct. 21

Saskatchewan residents with a valid health card can get their flu shot starting the week of October 21 at public health clinics, local pharmacies, and some physician and Nurse Practitioner offices.

“Although there have been delays in the delivery of this year’s influenza vaccine, the Ministry of Health has confirmed with Health Canada that Saskatchewan will receive vaccine to support the provincial program start date the week of October 21,” Saskatchewan’s Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Saqib Shahab said.

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Flu shots are recommended for those at higher risk, including seniors, people with underlying chronic health conditions, children under five, and pregnant women. Seniors often have chronic health conditions (like heart or lung disease or diabetes) and weaker immune systems, which makes them particularly vulnerable to complications from influenza.

In Weyburn, clinics will start on Monday, Oct. 21, at Grace United Church from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., followed by a clinic at the Family Place on Oct. 22 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and at McKenna Hall on Oct. 24 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The final clinic for October will be at the Soo Line Day Care on Oct. 28 from 3 to 6 p.m.

Pharmacists can administer the free flu shot to residents five years and older, during home visits, and in congregate living settings. Children under five and non-Saskatchewan residents can be vaccinated at a public health clinic.

For a list of pharmacies that provide the free flu shot, check the Pharmacy Association of Saskatchewan website at http://www.skpharmacists.ca/patients/flu-shots or ask your local pharmacy if they offer it. More than 340 pharmacies will offer free flu vaccinations this season.