By Angela Hill
People will be able to start rolling up their sleeves for their annual flu shot soon.
On Oct. 12 the public vaccination programs in the Prince Albert Parkland Health Region begin.
This year the immunization is free to anyone who wants it as a follow up to the H1N1 pandemic last year.
“As one of the good preventative health measures, you do want to ensure you have covered the entire population and there is no threat, because of all the work we did last year,” said Dr. Khami Chokani, medical health officer for the Prince Albert Parkland Health Region.
“It is really important because when you do get your vaccination you are busy not protecting not only yourself but others who are at high risk of becoming seriously ill.”
This year’s vaccinations protect against any remaining H1N1 virus as well as other common strains of flu virus, said Sandy Heidel, public health nurse in charge of the immunization program.
“It’s strongly encouraged for anyone who is pregnant and it is strongly encouraged for children under the age of five years, anyone with health risks, the population 65 and older and also strongly encouraged for anyone who has close contact with these particular populations,” she said.
The immunizations are being made available to people across the health region, Heidel said.
“We do go out to a lot of seniors’ centres, personal care homes. We provide a lot to the rural areas so check your post offices, check places in your community to see what day we are coming to your community.”
Schedules for the vaccination clinics and more information can be found on the Health Region website at princealbertparklandhealth.com
With the H1N1 pandemic officially over the health region is beginning to up the stocks of supplies, such as extra gloves and masks, to ensure they don’t expire, said Chokani.
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