Although it may seem like flu shots are in short supply, according to Island Health, there is no flu vaccine shortage, but rather a delay that was expected. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Flu shots are delayed, no shortage reported: Island Health

All 250,000 vaccines are expected on Vancouver Island by Nov. 14

Although it may seem like flu shots are in short supply, according to Island Health, there is not a flu vaccine shortage, but rather a delay that was expected.

Some adult flu vaccines are late to arrive on the Island from the BC Centre for Disease Control this year as a result of a shipping delay with the manufacturer, said a spokesperson for Island Health.

The vaccines have begun to arrive in health units and will continue to be shipped to the Island in weekly deliveries.

READ ALSO: Everything you need to know before getting the flu shot

Dr. Paul Hasselback, a medical health officer for Island Health, explained that millions of vaccines can’t all arrive at once and that the delay is simply a result of logistical issues.

“There will be plenty of vaccines for everyone,” he noted.

Due to the higher volume of vaccines in recent years, the focus has shifted from delivery in September to later in the fall. Which Hasselback says is fine because while flu shot season is October through November, flu season itself begins in late December and lasts until April.

All 250,000 vaccines are expected to have arrived in clinics, pharmacies and physicians’ offices on Vancouver Island by Nov. 14, said Hasselback.

According to him, the delay isn’t cause for worry. As long as people get vaccinated before the end of November, they’ll be protected. The vaccine remains the best way to protect against influenza and Hasselback feels this year’s vaccine is a good match for the strains.

READ ALSO: B.C. care homes urged to let seniors buy high-dose flu shot

Hasselback noted that Australia has a difficult flu season this year and was hit hard by a new strain of influenza in April. The country struggled to deal with the surplus of people in hospital, he said.

The Canadian vaccine will include protection against the strain that Australia struggled to manage, Hasselback confirmed.

The flu continues to be the communicable disease that causes the most hospitalizations and deaths, “even in a mild year,” Hasselback cautioned. Those over 65, between the six months and 5 years of age or who have an illness requiring ongoing medical care should get vaccinated, said Hasselback. Anyone who interacts with these groups or is pregnant should also be inoculated.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

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

Just Posted

Colwood art centre shuts its doors indefinitely

Board members look for new location when feasible, continue online

Saanich looks to help restaurants increase capacity with outdoor seating

District working to ensure restaurants can make the most of summer weather, mayor says

Greater Victoria guide dog walk turns to virtual physical challenge

Pet Valu Walk for Dog Guides is May 31 with an online twist

Study looks at feasibility of Vancouver Island abattoir

South Island Prosperity Partnership funds study looking at local meat processing

BC Ferries losing up to $1.5 million each day as pandemic tanks ridership

The company does not qualify for the wage subsidy

COVID-19: B.C. church services resume with public health limits

Maximum 50 in large spaces, Premier John Horgan says

Chilliwack school board censures trustee Barry Neufeld after controversial Facebook post

Board chair issues statement on censure but little else regarding Facebook post controversy

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Twenty-nine of Canada’s 48 national parks to reopen to day-use visitors June 1

All national parks, historic sites and marine conservation areas have been closed for weeks

JK Rowling publishes first chapters of new story online

Book will be a fairy tale for kids and benefit those particularly affected by the pandemic

Tahsis opens its gates to visitors to save local economy

Seasonal local businesses that rely on tourism hope to survive despite drop in tourist numbers

BC Corrections to expand list of eligible offenders for early release during pandemic

Non-violent offenders are being considered for early release through risk assessment process

Fraser Valley driver featured on ‘Highway Thru Hell’ TV show dies

Monkhouse died Sunday night of a heartattack, Jamie Davis towing confirmed

Most Read