Flu vaccines will be available Oct. 11 at Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) clinics, participating pharmacies and doctor’s offices.
As flu season approaches with no mask mandates or restrictions, the province’s top doctors said countries in the southern hemisphere are reporting flu infections have declined to pre-COVID-19 levels.
“As they relaxed public health measures and increased vaccination coverage, a little bit of COVID continued into the winter. But they also saw an early start to the flu season,” said Dr. Saqib Shahab, the province’s Chief Medical Health Officer.
Shahab believes Saskatchewan could also see the trend continue. But he added that getting an annual flu vaccine is the best protection available against the virus.
“We were always doing things with common sense, even before COVID,” he said.
“If you or your child is sick, don’t drag yourself to work and stay home until you’re better. But this fall, I really encourage people to make plans to get both their bivalent COVID vaccine and the flu vaccine.”
The Pharmacy Association of Saskatchewan said staff are ready to administer flu shots as soon as they become available, along with the next round of COVID-19 boosters.
“Even without COVID, every flu season is different,” said Michael Fougere, the CEO of the Pharmacy Association of Saskatchewan.
“What I can tell you and any parent looking for the flu shot is that we have them available and you can go to any pharmacist and get that shot.”
Any resident of six months and older is eligible for the injection. The SHA website has a complete list of flu vaccine clinics in the province.