Health Experts Reflect on Return of Flu Season Amid Fourth Wave of COVID in Hamilton – Hamilton | The Canadian News

A Hamilton pharmacist believes that the success of this year’s flu vaccine will largely depend on when the COVID-19 booster shots are given, which are now spreading across the province.

Phil Hauser of Hauser Pharmacy says that with the third doses of COVID vaccines given to the most vulnerable in the province, residents may choose not to add the flu vaccine for protection, especially if it is not generally received by all. years.

“I think it would be a bit more unlikely for them to get the flu vaccine now, just since there were some social mandates for COVID vaccines,” Hauser said.

The chemist was hoping for some additional guidance from the province regarding how pharmacies should handle the administration of the two injections following the announcement that $ 89 million worth of flu vaccines were purchased for 2021-22.

Read more:

Canada Could Head Into Flu Season Amid Fourth Wave Of COVID-19, Says Tam

The story continues below the ad.

“We were hoping that maybe some guidance on that would be provided with the co-administration of the flu vaccine and that we would be doing both at the same time,” Hauser said.

“I think it will be very exhausting if that third COVID vaccine arrives and we have to do it and we are applying the flu vaccine also for that same population.”

Last week, Canada’s top doctor warned that the country will likely have a normal flu season, with COVID cases declining, suggesting that Canadians may have less immunity as it was virtually nonexistent during the pandemic.

Click to play video: 'Doctors warn flu season could return with a vengeance'

Doctors warn flu season could return in force

Doctors Warn Flu Season Could Return Strongly – Oct 14, 2021

“This year we anticipate a possible resurgence of the flu, due to lower levels of immunity in the population as a result of the reduced circulation of the last flu season and the relaxation of some restrictive community-based public health measures,” Tam said.

The story continues below the ad.

A recent Hamilton-based study supported the recent characterization of flu by the healthcare community in 2020, revealing that the virus positivity rate dropped to 2.5% compared to the average annual rate of 10% between 2010 and 2019.

“Our findings suggest that efforts to control the COVID-19 pandemic may have had additional benefits in suppressing the transmission of other respiratory viruses in Hamilton, Ontario,” the study said in its conclusion.

“Mitigation strategies, such as physical distancing, the use of masks and the closure of schools, could play an important role in the fight against future seasonal respiratory viruses and emerging infectious diseases with pandemic potential.”

Read more:

Flu Vaccines Now Available to High-Risk Ontario Residents Ahead of Wider Rollout in November

Public Health Ontario says flu cases reported through its surveillance systems were historically low in 2020, with fewer than 25 cases of laboratory-confirmed flu cases reported. The province had 12,829 laboratory-confirmed cases in 2019/20 and 10,743 in 2018/19.

The province also revealed that despite being in a pandemic, uptake of flu vaccines in 2020 actually increased 10 percent compared to 2019.

Hamilton’s health medical officer says that with the National Immunization Advisory Committee giving the go-ahead to administer the COVID vaccine with other vaccines, the city will likely not alter the format of its implementation for 2021/22.

The story continues below the ad.

“The flu program always extends first to the most vulnerable, to long-term care homes, to nursing homes, to primary care practices to vaccinate those most at risk of complications from the flu. flu, and then of course it goes to the general public, ”Richardson said.

The city’s top doctor believes Ontario’s purchase of 7.6 million doses of flu vaccines and increased vaccines last year could be a positive sign that the affliction will not recover after a year of break.

“So between having more vaccines to be used this year, as well as continued COVID measures, we expect the rates to stay low,” Richardson said.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Leave a Comment