The flu season has started early in YYC.
According to Alberta Health Services, 922 cases of the flu have been confirmed in the Calgary area — a higher amount than all other Albertan areas combined.
- Calgarians will be able to get FREE flu shots this month
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This alarming stat comes after last year’s 25 flu-related deaths and nearly 1,000 confirmed influenza cases in Calgary alone.
Currently, Calgary has seen 65% of Alberta’s 1,411 total confirmed flu cases so far in the 2018/2019 season.
AHS will be releasing weekly data tracking confirmed cases, locations, deaths related to, and more in regards to the spread of the virus. According to the third week of data, released on November 22, one Calgarian has already passed away after being diagnosed with lab-confirmed influenza.
The data shows that a similar amount of people between Edmonton and Calgary have been immunized (327,374 in Edmonton, 388,318 in Calgary), however, more than five times the amount of Calgarians have contracted the flu this season.
Clinics have been administering the free vaccine for over a month now to nearly 400,000 Calgarians, though this accounts for just over 30% of the total population.
The past few years have shown a steady increase in administered influenza shots. Taking into consideration that the 2018/2019 flu season is still in its early stages, the nearly one million shots already administered throughout Alberta is a significant improvement over past years.
Immunizations are available to all Calgarians over the age of five, free of charge, at any AHS clinic, pharmacist, or physician.