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Influenza (Flu) Immunization 2015-16

The influenza (flu) vaccine is free (publicly funded) and is offered to Saskatchewan residents who are six months and older. 

Flu vaccines are proven to be safe by Health Canada. By getting immunized, you protect yourself and those close to you during the flu season.


1. Where can I get vaccinated

The free flu vaccine is available through public health clinics across the province, and some physician and Nurse Practitioner offices, as in previous years.

This year pharmacists can also provide free flu vaccinations as part of the province’s influenza immunization program. Over 250 of the 360 community pharmacies in the province are participating.

All residents 6 months and older can get the injectable flu vaccine at public flu clinics. FluMist (nasal vaccine) is available from public health clinics to children between the ages of two and 17.

Pharmacists offer only injectable vaccine (not nasal vaccine) to adults and children 9 years of age and older with a valid Saskatchewan health card. Children under 9 will need to be vaccinated at a public health clinic.


2. Find a flu clinic or pharmacy where you can get vaccinated

For detailed information about flu clinic locations, dates, and times, please:

If you want to get your free flu vaccination at a pharmacy or drugstore, check first to make sure they offer it. See more information on pharmacies offering free flu vaccinations, including a list of participating pharmacies at Pharmacy Association of Saskatchewan.


3. Who should get the influenza vaccine

The vaccine is recommended to everyone six months and older but is particularly important for people at high-risk of influenza complications:

  • pregnant women;
  • young children;
  • the elderly;
  • persons with underlying health conditions or compromised immune systems; and
  • caregivers and contacts of people at high risk.

Other ways to protect yourself against influenza

You can also protect yourself against influenza through frequent hand washing, coughing and sneezing into your sleeve, cleaning surfaces often, and staying home when you are sick. For more information about influenza, symptoms, prevention and treatment, visit HealthLine Online, contact the public health clinic in your area or call HealthLine 811.


4. Vaccine effectiveness and safety

The flu vaccine is a safe, effective way to protect yourself and those around you during the flu season.

The effectiveness of the vaccine is usually around 60 per cent in healthy persons.

Its effectiveness depends on:

  • The match between the vaccine strains and the influenza strains circulating in the community; and
  • The age and the immune response of the person being immunized.

It is more effective in people who are younger and otherwise healthy, such as children and adults, but may be less effective in older people. If a person gets influenza after getting immunized, they usually have a milder illness and are less likely to require hospitalization.


5. Further information

Influenza viral strains in this year's publicly funded vaccines

The vaccines used this year contain two influenza A viral components (H1N1 and H3N2) and one or two influenza B viral component, which have been identified by the World Health Organization as most likely to circulate in 2015-2016.

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