Flu shots available in Nova Scotia next week
Beginning Monday, flu shots will be available for free at most pharmacies, family doctors, family practice nurses and nurse practitioners across Nova Scotia.
The province says residents over six months old are highly encouraged to get a flu vaccine this year in order to protect themselves, as well as family and friends.
"With flu season coming, and the fourth wave of COVID-19 present, we need to continue the healthy habits we've learned throughout the COVID-19 pandemic," Dr. Robert Strang, chief medical officer of health, said in a release.
"That means first and foremost getting your vaccine to protect yourself and loved ones. But it also means continuing to practice the same public health measures we've been using for COVID-19."
Much like the COVID-19 vaccine, it can take up to two weeks for the vaccination to provide protection.
"Nova Scotians should get vaccinated in the coming weeks to see the full benefit before flu season arrives, which is usually late December to early January," says the release.
Flu symptoms can result in sudden high fever, headache, general aches and pains, fatigue and weakness, cough, nasal congestion and sore throat.
Those with flu symptoms should stay at home. People cannot catch the flu from receiving the vaccination.
This year, due to COVID-19 precautions, the process to receive a flu shot will be different than in previous years.
There will be pre-screening for COVID-19, requiring an appointment rather than accepting walk-ins, physical distancing and wearing your mask indoors.
"It is safe for individuals, including those age 12 and older, to receive the flu vaccine before, after or even at the same time as receiving the COVID-19 vaccine," says the release.
"COVID-19 vaccinations do not protect against the flu."
Nova Scotia has ordered 495,200 doses of the flu shot this year.