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Flu shot season in Alberta starts Monday

A flu shot is given at a clinic in Calgary. Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. (PHOTO: Tom Ross - 660 NEWS)

CALGARY (660 NEWS) – It’s that time of year again, the annual flu shot will be available at most pharmacies and doctor’s offices beginning Monday.

Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Immunizations is encouraging all Canadians over the age of six months to get a flu shot, saying vaccination is one of the most effective preventive measures you can take to avoid getting sick.

Health officials in Alberta are also pressing for people to get the shot especially with the province expecting a second wave of COVID-19, which carries similar symptoms.

“They think that if they haven’t had COVID then they are ok, which is not a good attitude to have during this flu season”, said Amani Chehade, a pharmacist and owner of a Shoppers Drug Mart in Calgary. “Canadians should not let their guard down.”

Chehade said if you’re planning to get a flu shot, you can expect some lineups.

“We’re having more interest in flu shots compared to the years before. Last year, there was 40 per cent of people wanting to get the flu shot, this year it’s 57 per cent.”

According to Alberta Health Services (AHS), over 1.4 million Albertans were immunized for the flu between Oct. 6, 2019, and May 2, 2020.

Over 1,000 people were hospitalized with the flu, with 39 deaths reported.