Those already hospitalized – especially the very young, people with compromised immune systems and the elderly – are highly susceptible to influenza, and each year there are around 3,500 flu-related deaths in Canada.
Young children can become quite ill with influenza because they are experiencing it for the first time. This means they may have more symptoms (like fever, vomiting and a cough) for longer than adults do. It also means that they are more likely to pass it on to those around them, including to their parents and grandparents.
To protect our patients and their families from this serious and potentially deadly illness, all staff, volunteers and visitors to BC Children’s Hospital and our other PHSA sites must have had a flu shot or wear a mask during flu season (December 1, 2015 until approximately March 2016). This policy applies to all patient care facilities in BC.
Even healthy people can get very sick from the flu, and infected people are highly contagious and can spread influenza to others for up to 24 hours before showing symptoms. The flu shot is safe and effective at preventing illness, especially when used with other infection prevention practices such as proper hand hygiene and staying home when sick.
People accompanying a friend or family member at an outpatient appointment, or visiting a patient at BC Children’s Hospital, are eligible to receive the flu shot free of charge.
Visit our Family Flu Clinic, which is open for patients, families and visitors to the Hospital until December 11, 2015 to get immunized. The clinic runs Monday – Friday, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. on the ground floor of the Ambulatory Care Building.
Watch a video with Sarah McCann, a nurse at the Family Flu Clinic, explain why getting your flu vaccine is so important.
If you are not immunized, masks will be available at nursing stations, outpatient reception desks and/or the main entrances of our facilities, and wearing instructions will be provided.
• Your family doctor
• A walk-in clinic
• Your pharmacist
• A public health clinic
Find a convenient flu clinic location, along with more information about flu vaccination including who’s eligible for a free seasonal flu shot, at Immunize BC