Flu is on the way - get protected at your pharmacy

VANCOUVER, Jan. 26 /CNW/ - The BC Pharmacy Association (BCPhA) is reminding British Columbians that they can get their flu shot from their pharmacist following a warning from the Northern Health Authority that seasonal influenza is on its way to B.C.

Dr. David Bowering, the authority's Chief Medical Officer, said that an outbreak of the flu has already hit eastern Canada and is likely on its way to B.C.

More than 1,000 B.C. pharmacists across the province are authorized to administer injections and can give British Columbians their annual flu shot, which is free for patients in at-risk groups.

"B.C. pharmacists have administered tens of thousands of publicly funded vaccines already this flu season," says Parkash Ragsdale, Deputy CEO and Director of Professional Services at BCPhA. "They are a quick and convenient option for patients looking to get protected against this annual threat."

In 2009, B.C. pharmacists were granted authority to administer injections, and many were trained through the BC Pharmacy Association's Accredited Administration of Injections Training Program.

"Even if you're healthy, you could be living with someone who is considered high risk and may be eligible for a free flu shot," says Ragsdale. "Our advice to anyone wanting a flu shot is to call their pharmacist and ask if they are authorized to administer injections, or visit the online Flu Clinic Locator."

The Flu Clinic Locator is an online tool that allows members of the public to search for pharmacies and clinics that are offering seasonal flu shots (details below).

Notes to editors:

  1. ImmunizeBC's Flu Clinic Locator is available at http://www.health.gov.bc.ca/flu/.
  2. To interview an authorized pharmacist in your area please contact the BC Pharmacy Association.
  3. BCPhA represents more than 2,300 pharmacists and 720 pharmacies in B.C. who provide trusted advice and accessible care to patients throughout British Columbia.

SOURCE British Columbia Pharmacy Association

For further information:

Simon Briault, Manager of Communications: 604.269.2866/ simon.briault@bcpharmacy.ca

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