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Alberta’s influenza immunization program begins today

News Release

Alberta’s influenza immunization program begins Oct. 20

SOUTH ZONE – Starting today, Tuesday, October 20, Albertans will have the opportunity to protect themselves and others against influenza, with the launch of Alberta’s annual influenza immunization program.

Offering influenza immunization, free of charge, to all Albertans six months of age and older, Alberta’s program will make vaccine available at hundreds of Alberta Health Services (AHS) public influenza immunization clinics, as well as pharmacies and physician offices, around the province.

“Influenza arrives every fall, and chances are, you will be exposed,” says Dr. Vivien Suttorp, Medical Officer of Health, South Zone. “You may be healthy now, but keep in mind: good health isn’t contagious. Influenza is. To protect your health, get immunized.”

Immunization is the most effective means of protecting against the strains of influenza virus expected to circulate this season. Because those strains change from season to season, Albertans are reminded that they cannot rely on having been immunized in years past.

“It’s pretty simple: to be protected this season, you need to be immunized this season. Without immunization, you’re at risk.”

That risk is not something to be underestimated. Last season, more than 1,870 Albertans were hospitalized due to influenza, and for 103 Albertans, it was fatal. Thousands more suffered from the illness, and put those around them at risk of contracting influenza as well.

“Chances are, your friends and family don’t want influenza any more than you do. So, don’t take that chance. Get immunized.”

For more information, including local clinic schedules, Albertans can visit www.ahs.ca/influenza or call Health Link at 811.

Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than four million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.

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