Flu Cases Rising, With Children Especially at Risk


​Make sure to protect your children with the flu shot​​​


​​A message from Dr. Celeste Loewe, Medical Officer, Health & Wellness, Office of the Chief Medical Officer; and Brittany Deeter, RN, MsN, Director, Communicable Disease, Public Health Response Team

Cases of influenza (flu) are rising, and this year's flu virus can cause more severe illness in young children.

The flu is an infection of the respiratory system that can put you or your child at risk of severe disease and other complications, e.g., bacterial pneumonia.

In the final weeks of 2023 in BC, three children under the age of 10 died from influenza-related causes and complications. So, it is even more important than usual to get vaccinated and to follow all other preventative measures.

If you or your child has a chronic illness, consider talking to your doctor about anti-viral medication you can take to prevent complications for the flu.

Get vaccinated!

The strongest protection for the immune system is vaccination. Make sure to get both your annual flu shot and your COVID-19 shot / booster, and to keep your children's other vaccinations up to date. Talk to your nurse practitioner or health centre if you are unsure about when/where to get these vaccines.

Like all routine vaccinations, the flu shot helps our bodies build immunity to fight illness.

Other protective measures

  • Stay home, and keep your children home when you or they are feeling unwell.
  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • If you must go out when feeling unwell, wear a well-fitted, high-quality mask in public indoor places.
  • Consider wearing a mask in public indoor places even if you are not unwell.

The Emergency Room (ER) in hospitals can be very busy during winter months. Here is some information on when to go to the ER. ​

For information on the flu and vaccines, please click on the links below.​

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