The peak of the influenza season is traditionally November to April. The flu shot, along with good personal hygiene, including good hand washing, is the best defense against contracting and spreading the influenza virus. If you do find yourself sick with flu, you can help protect others from getting ill; stay home and rest, drink plenty of fluids and manage your symptoms.
Elders, young children and people with immune deficiencies are especially vulnerable to flu in the winter months. With winter gatherings coming up, make sure that you've protected yourself, so that you can protect those most vulnerable in your community.
All First Nations and Aboriginal peoples at-home and away from home (on and off-reserve) are eligible to receive free flu shots each influenza season.
There are number of different suppliers of influenza vaccine to BC, but they all provide the same coverage of the same influenza virus strains. Some vaccines are made for infants and children, some for adults. Your primary care provider will know which influenza vaccine is right for you and your family.
Yes! The flu shot is completely safe for First Nations and Aboriginal people. Aboriginal people are
not at higher risk of experiencing negative side effects from immunization. However, Aboriginal people
are at higher risk of severe illness, hospitalization and mortality during a pandemic, such as influenza.
Immunization is effective preventative care and can be combined with traditional healing and wellness practices for the best health outcomes.
Free flu shots for First Nations and Aboriginal people are available from your Community Health Nurse at your Health Centre or Nursing Station and may also be obtained from other health care professionals like Pharmacists, Nurse Practitioners and Family Doctors. The flu vaccine is safe and effective for First Nations people. To find a flu shot clinic near you, go to the BC Flu Clinic Locator.
Watch these videos about why the flu shot is important
The FNHA supports Community Health Nurses (CHNs) in delivering influenza immunization programs within your community. We work with CHNs and Regional Health Authorities to ensure timely access to flu shots. The FNHA provides immunization education, training and certification to CHNs within First Nations communities.
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For more information, contact FNHA Health Protection team at 1.844.364.2232