News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

October 22, 2021

PROVINCE ENCOURAGES MANITOBANS TO EMBRACE WINTER WELLNESS, LAUNCHES 2021 INFLUENZA VACCINATION CAMPAIGN

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Better Health, Getting Your Flu Vaccine Will Reduce Strain on Health-Care System: Gordon

 The province is encouraging Manitobans to embrace winter wellness as it launches a new flu vaccination campaign encouraging all Manitobans to stay well and get a flu vaccine to help protect themselves and their loved ones, Health and Seniors Care Minister Audrey Gordon announced today.

“Overall health and wellness has never been more important than it is right now,” said Gordon. “I encourage all Manitobans, especially those at increased risk, their caregivers and close family and friends, to get their flu vaccine this fall. Getting a flu vaccine is the most effective way Manitobans can protect themselves and each other from the flu. It means fewer people getting sick, fewer people who miss work or school, and fewer people who need to be treated in a hospital.”

The annual influenza vaccination campaign has been redesigned this season and merged with the #ProtectMB website to encompass all vaccinations. The minister noted winter wellness encourages all Manitobans to commit to simple lifestyle activities that will help keep people active, eat healthy foods, reduce stress and get the flu vaccine.

“When Manitobans work together to stay healthy and get the seasonal flu vaccine, we see tremendous results. We need to look no further than last year’s flu vaccine uptake and the low number of influenza cases in Manitoba,” said Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba’s chief provincial public health officer. “When Manitobans stay healthy as well as stay home when they are sick, cover their cough, wash their hands and get the flu vaccine, we are a healthier community and enable the health system to care for those most critical in their time of need.”

A record-setting 31.5 per cent of Manitobans registered with Manitoba Health and Seniors Care received the vaccine last flu season. Manitobans who received the vaccine last year are encouraged to get it again, as are those getting it for the first time.

Roussin noted it is important for all Manitobans six months of age and older to get immunized against influenza. Once again, the 2021 campaign will be targeted to those most vulnerable and their caregivers, including specific outreach to the health-care sector and the public service.

In 2017, Manitoba became the first province to offer a high-dose version of the influenza vaccine and many provinces have followed. The high-dose influenza vaccine is an injected flu vaccine formulated for people age 65 years and older. Evidence shows - the high-dose influenza vaccine especially protects seniors who are at greater risk of influenza and its complications.

Manitoba Health and Seniors Care offers a high-dose inactivated influenza vaccine (fluzone high-dose) to individuals 65 years of age and older who meet any of the following criteria:

  • residents of long-term care facilities (LTCF) including chronic care residents;
  • residents of supportive and assisted-living housing;
  • clients in interim or transitional care beds, respite care clients and new, unimmunized residents admitted to a LTCF during the flu season;
  • individuals in a provincial correctional facility including those who are newly incarcerated or transferred from other federal or out-of-province correctional facilities;
  • receiving home-care services while on a waiting list for admission into a LTCF;
  • living on a First Nation, remote or isolated community; and
  • living north of the 53rd parallel of latitude.

The flu vaccine and Pneu-P-23 vaccine, which helps protect against pneumococcal disease and is offered free of charge to seniors anywhere flu vaccines are offered and can be administered at the same time, are available at local public health offices, nursing stations, doctors’ offices, community clinics and Access Centres. Pharmacists can also provide immunization services to people seven years of age and older. Manitobans interested in getting the vaccine should contact providers first to ensure availability.

Manitoba has already begun shipping vaccines to providers and is expected to receive the full provincial vaccine allotment over the next several weeks, barring any external supply or delivery disruptions.

The seasonal flu vaccine is available in many locations across the province. Manitobans can now find locations and book online at www.ProtectMB.ca or by calling call 1-844-626-8222 (1-844-MAN-VACC). Walk-ins are also available at many locations.

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