Flu shots dry up

Whitehorse has run out of flu vaccines. Flu clinics are closed until further notice, the Yukon’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Brendan Hanley, said Friday.

Whitehorse has run out of flu vaccines.

Flu clinics are closed until further notice, the Yukon’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Brendan Hanley, said Friday.

“As predicted, Whitehorse has run out of vaccine, if a little sooner than anticipated. This means that Yukoners have stepped forward to achieve an unprecedented rate of immunization against seasonal influenza,” he said in a statement.

“In turn we will see better protection for those who can’t, won’t or are unable to obtain vaccination for now.”

In the communities, health centres are operating as usual. Those clinics have already sent Whitehorse any doses they could spare, he said.

On the phone today, Hanley estimates about 9,000 Yukoners have been vaccinated.

On Friday, an all-day flu clinic was set up at the Whitehorse Health Centre. Flu shots ran out about half an hour before closing.

At the Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre, the last remaining vaccines were gone earlier that day.

The territory has never run out before, Hanley said.

Yukon officials have requested more vaccine from the federal public works department, as have many other jurisdictions.

“We’re basically in the same pot as everyone else,” Hanley said.

The federal government is in charge of organizing vaccines across the country. It will be up to those officials to see if other jurisdictions have extra vaccines to share with those in need.

Failing that, the next stage is to look outside of Canada, to Europe, to see if there are vaccines to spare.

Hanley said he is hopeful there will be more flu shots in the territory later this week. He said he doesn’t want to officially announce new clinics until he is certain.

The territory bases its order for the annual vaccine on previous experiences.

“We base it on demand from previous years with a certain cushion in case it’s needed,” Hanley said.

In previous years the territory has used about 7,500 doses, he said.

Local health officials ran dedicated flu shot clinics from about mid-October to early November.

After that, vaccine clinics – for vaccinations of any kind – were run out of the health centre every weekday morning or by appointment.

Hanley called this year’s flu season in the territory “intense.”

He said confirmed cases spiked in early December and again around the Christmas season.

That, combined with media attention on the busy flu season in other jurisdictions, may explain people’s interest in getting the shot, he said.

Updates on clinic dates and times will be posted at www.hss.gov.yk.ca.

Contact Ashley Joannou at ashleyj@yukon-news.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

During our recent conversation, John Nicholson showed me snapshots of his time working on the Yukon riverboats 70 years ago. (Michael Gates)
History Hunter: Yukon man relives the riverboat days after seven decades

John Nicholson took summer work on Yukon steamers in the 1950s

A city map shows the property at 107 Range Road. The zoning is now in place for developers to proceed with plans for a Dairy Queen drive-thru. If plans proceed on schedule the new restaurant is anticipated to open in October. (Cyrstal Schick/Yukon News)
October opening eyed for Dairy Queen

Will depend on everything going according to plan

NDP candidate Annie Blake, left, and Liberal incumbent Pauline Frost. (Submitted photos)
Official recount confirms tie vote in Vuntut Gwitchin riding

Both candidates Pauline Frost and Annie Blake are still standing with 78 votes each

Artist’s rendering of a Dairy Queen drive-thru. At its April 13 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved a zoning change to allow a drive-thru at 107 Range Road. Developers sought the change to build a Dairy Queen there. (Submitted)
Drive-thru approved by Whitehorse city council at 107 Range Road

Rezoning could pave the way for a Dairy Queen


Wyatt’s World for April 14, 2021.… Continue reading

Joel Krahn/joelkran.com Hikers traverse the Chilkoot Trail in September 2015. Alaska side.
The Canadian side of the Chilkoot Trail will open for summer

The Canadian side of the Chilkoot Trail will open for summer Parks… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall (Yukon News file)
City news, briefly

A look at city council matters for the week of April 12

École Whitehorse Elementary Grade 7 students Yumi Traynor and Oscar Wolosewich participated in the Civix Student Vote in Whitehorse on April 12. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Yukon Student Vote chooses Yukon Party government; NDP take popular vote

The initiative is organized by national non-profit CIVIX

Yvonne Clarke is the newly elected Yukon Party MLA for Porter Creek Centre. (Submitted/Yukon Party)
Yvonne Clarke elected as first Filipina MLA in the Yukon Legislative Assembly

Clarke beat incumbent Liberal Paolo Gallina in Porter Creek Centre

Emily Tredger at NDP election night headquarters after winning the Whitehorse Centre riding. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Emily Tredger takes Whitehorse Centre for NDP

MLA-elect ready to get to work in new role

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Two new cases of COVID-19 variant identified in territory

“If variants were to get out of control in the Yukon, the impact could be serious.”

Today’s Mailbox: Rent freezes and the youth vote

Dear Editor, I read the article regarding the recommendations by the Yukon… Continue reading

Point-in-Time homeless count planned this month

Volunteers will count those in shelters, short-term housing and without shelter in a 24-hour period.

Most Read