CPHO says get your flu shot to fight COVID-19

Kami Kandola receives her flu shot
Dr. Kami Kandola receiving her flu shot in 2015. (Photo by MyTrueNorthNow.com staff)
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The GNWT has announced the schedule for flu shots clinics and are urging residents to get the vaccine to help reduce the burden on the health department from COVID-19.

At most locations, an appointment is required to be scheduled before you can receive a flu shot. Only Fort Smith and Beaufort Delta are offering walk-in services. Hay River and Yellowknife patients must call or book an appointment online.

The CPHO recommends that NWT residents get their flu shots as “incidences of respiratory infections will increase in the coming weeks as more people gather indoors at school and work.”

“By getting a flu shot you can help protect yourself and those around you,” Sue Cullen, Chief Officer, Northwest Territories Health and Social Services Authority, said in a press release. “You can also help additionally this year by reducing your chances of needing a COVID-19 test and in turn reducing the demand put on our health system.”

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Symptoms of the flu and COVID-19 are similar and a surge in flu cases could result in the territory’s COVID-19 testing capacity being burdened and overwhelmed. 

Getting vaccinated and reducing the number of flu cases will allow tracing of COVID-19 to be more efficient and effective, according to a Department of Health and Social Services press release.

Infants, seniors, those who are pregnant or those who have a pre-existing condition like cancer or heart or lung disease, may be at increased risk of health complications from the flu.

Flu shot clinics open on October 13 in Beaufort Delta and Sahtu, October 24 in Fort Smith, on November 2 in the Deh Cho Region and Tlicho, on October 26 in Hay River, and on October 27 in Yellowknife.

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