Public flu clinics opened across the territory this week, and the Yukon government is encouraging all Yukoners to get their flu shots.
“I know all Yukoners have busy lives, and if we can avoid getting the flu, we can look forward to a more enjoyable and productive fall and winter,” Premier Darrell Pasloski said in a news release.
Flu shots are especially important for the very young, the elderly, people with chronic conditions and those working in health care, as well as those who interact with these vulnerable people.
The shots are not always a perfect match for the actual strains that end up circulating in a given season. But Dr. Brendan Hanley, Yukon’s chief medical officer of health, said it’s still valuable to get immunized.
“For a few minutes of your time, for free, you can get a vaccine that will cut your chances of getting influenza at least in half, protect those people at risk of complications from getting influenza, and help limit the circulation of influenza in the community,” he said in the release. “That’s a pretty good deal.”
In January 2014, during an especially heavy flu season, Whitehorse ran out of flu vaccines for the first time. At the time, 9,000 Yukoners had been immunized.