The annual flu vaccination campaign got off to a flying start in Bas-Saint-Laurent.
The vaccination begins on November 1 and the appointment booking has more than doubled compared to last year. The numbers are impressive: 8,411 appointments were made in a few hours, Monday, on the first day compared to 3,835 during the same period in 2019.
The public health authorities point out that the vaccine represents the best means of protection against the influenza virus.
And in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, a specific protocol has been adopted to make this vast operation as safe as possible.
The nurse responsible for the vaccination campaign at the Bas-Saint-Laurent Integrated Health and Social Services Center, Nathalie Bond, stressed that all health and physical distancing measures have been put in place.
Wearing a mask, washing hands and the obligation to answer a questionnaire are obviously among the main measures in force. Ms. Blond also asks people to arrive no more than five minutes before their appointment.
Vaccination is recommended and offered free of charge to people most at risk of developing complications, i.e. people 6 months and older with chronic diseases (including pregnant women, regardless of the stage of their pregnancy), people aged 6 months and over. 75 years and over, pregnant women in the second and third trimester of pregnancy.
In order to reduce the risk of contamination, vaccination is also offered free of charge to family caregivers and relatives who live under the same roof as a child under 6 months old or a person at risk, as well as to health workers. health, particularly those providing direct care to users.
Influenza vaccination is no longer recommended for healthy people 60 to 74 years old and children 6 to 23 months old. However, if these people wish to be vaccinated, the vaccine will be offered to them free of charge.
According to Nathalie Bond, by increasing the number of people vaccinated, we reduce the pressure on health services and by the same token these people will be protected and will not go to the emergency room.
The vaccination campaign will take place simultaneously in the eight MRCs in Bas-Saint-Laurent.