Never too late to get a flu shot

Darrell Cole
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AMHERST - It's never too late for a flu shot.
Public health officials in Cumberland County are considering holding another immunization clinic to prepare for the annual flu season.
"We still have some vaccine left and the fact the flu has not arrived yet means there's still time to get a flu shot if you haven't got one," Jackie Beal of public health said Monday. "Rather than waste what we have we figured we'd have another clinic and get the word out to people who may want a flu shot but didn't get out to one of the clinics."
Beal said the number of vaccinations provided in the recent flu campaign is on par with other years with the emphasis being placed on those deemed to be at risk of developing complications from the flu and those who work close with those in the high risk categories such as health-care workers, emergency services personnel and law enforcement agencies.
For now, Beal said anyone still wanting a flu shot can call public health at 667-3319. If there's sufficient demand, another public clinic will be scheduled. Last year, a special clinic was held at the Amherst Centre Mall, but it was not well attended.
Beal said the flu has yet to make an appearance in Cumberland County or Nova Scotia. There was one confirmed case of the flu early in the fall, but its origin was from someone who travelled into the province.
There have been no confirmed cases since then.
Beal said it's important for people not confuse other illnesses with the flu. Public health has been in contact with several nursing homes about a novovirus like illness that includes vomiting and diarrhea.
The flu is caused by influenza A and B viruses and occurs in Canada every year. The usual symptoms of the flu are sudden onset of fever, chills, cough, sore throat, sore muscles and joints, headache and tiredness.
Influenza can cause severe illness and even death, especially in people over age 65 and those with chronic illness. The best way to prevent the flu and its complications is the flu vaccine.

Geographic location: Cumberland County, AMHERST, Nova Scotia Canada

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