Canadian Coalition for Immunization Awareness & Promotion

Canadian Coalition for Immunization Awareness & Promotion

December 19, 2007 08:30 ET

Media Advisory: It's Not Too Late to Get a Flu Shot

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 19, 2007) - As families and friends plan to get together over the holiday break, they should also plan to stay healthy and reduce the spread of diseases such as influenza. Influenza can be deadly for people with lung, heart or kidney disease, and those with other underlying conditions such as diabetes. The very young and the very old are also vulnerable to this highly contagious respiratory disease.

The Canadian Coalition for Immunization Awareness & Promotion advises that influenza immunization is the most effective way to prevent influenza.
Other effective means to reduce the spread of the influenza virus include:

- Wash hands frequently

- Sneeze or cough into your sleeve or a disposable tissue

- Keep shared surfaces clean e.g. doorknobs, light switches, keyboards, telephones

- Stay home if you get sick

According to FluWatch (Public Health Agency of Canada) influenza activity is increasing in certain regions. Every year in Canada, seasonal influenza and its complications lead to an average 4,000 deaths and 20,000 hospitalizations. Media across Canada can help reduce these numbers by encouraging everyone to get immunized (a flu shot).

It's not too late to get a flu shot.

Ask your doctor, nurse, pharmacist or local public health office about immunization.

About the Canadian Coalition for Immunization Awareness & Promotion:

The Canadian Coalition for Immunization Awareness & Promotion is a coalition of national health and consumer groups committed to the promotion of immunization as the best way to prevent influenza. The goal of the annual campaign is to increase immunization rates by promoting the benefits of influenza immunization for all ages.

More links and backgrounders:

The Public Health Agency of Canada

Provincial and Territorial ministries of health and regional health authorities

Who should be immunized?

1) People at high risk of influenza related complications including:

- Adults and children with cardiac or pulmonary disorders including asthma, diabetes mellitus & other metabolic diseases, cancer, immunodeficiency, immunosuppression (due to underlying disease and/or therapy).

- People with renal disease

- People with anemia or hemoglobinopathy

- People with conditions that compromise the management of respiratory secretions

- Children & adolescents with conditions treated for long periods with acetylsalicylic acid

- All residents of nursing homes & other chronic care facilities

- Adults aged 65 years or older

- Children aged 6 to 23 months

- Pregnant women

2) People capable of transmitting influenza to those at high risk of complications including:

- Health care and other care providers who could transmit to those at high risk

- Household contacts of those at high risk

- Pregnant women in their third trimester especially and women at all stages of pregnancy or for breastfeeding mothers

- Those providing regular child care to children 0 to 23 months

- Those who provide services within closed settings to persons at high risk

3) Others:

- People who provide essential community services

- People in direct contact with avian influenza infected poultry during culling

- Healthy people aged 2 to 64 years should be encouraged to receive the vaccine even if they are not in the above groups

Contact Information

  • Canadian Coalition for Immunization Awareness & Promotion
    Mary Appleton
    613-725-3769 ext. 139