2019-2020 season -updated on Oct 7, 2019
This year, Get Your Flu Shot at Sina Pharmacy
Sina Pharmacy is committed to helping you stay healthy and getting the flu shot is your best defense against the flu. Our pharmacists can immunize you with a flu shot any time, any day (no appointment necessary, but if you do not want to wait longer you can make your appointment by filling out the form provided). When you check-in at the front desk, all you need is your provincial health card (Care Card). Please note that by BC provincial legislation, Pharmacists cannot administer a flu shot to children under 5 years of age.
Book your appointment
How to book your appointment: 1. select "Flu Shot Vaccination" from the Service tab below, 2. choose the appointment date and time, 3. provide your personal info, and 4. submit the data.
Reduce your risk and get your flu shot --- All you need is your provincial health card & 15 minutes of your time.
Frequently Asked Questions
The flu may also lead to complications, such as pneumonia, and may worsen certain other conditions like asthma, congestive heart failure or diabetes.
The main differences are shown in the table below.
|Fever||Rare||Unusual, high fever (102 F / 39C - 104F / 40C), sudden onset, lasts 3-4 days|
|Headache||Rare||Unusual, can be severe|
|General aches & pains||Sometimes, mild||Unusual, often severe|
|Fatigue and weakness||Sometimes, mild||Usual, severe, may last 2-3 weeks or more|
|Extreme fatigue||Unusual||Usual, early onset, can be severe|
|Runny, stuffy nose||Common||Common|
|Chest discomfort, coughing||Sometimes, mild to moderate||Usual, can become severe|
|Complications||Can lead to sinus congestion or earache||Can lead to pneumonia & respiratory failure, worsen a current chronic condition, be life-threatening|
|Prevention||Frequent hand-washing||Annual vaccination and frequent hand-washing|
Remember that people may be contagious BEFORE they know they have the flu and AFTER their symptoms have gone. People may be contagious for a few days before symptoms begin and for 5-7 days after becoming sick.
The Public Health Agency of Canada and the US Centers for Disease Control both advise that the best way to protect yourself from the flu is to get an annual flu vaccine in fall. Since the virus causing the flu changes from year to year, the flu vaccine you received last year may not protect you this year. If the vaccine and the flu strain are a good match, the vaccine can prevent the flu in about 70%-90% of healthy children and adults.
The number of cases of the flu varies from year to year. It will depend on:
• How actively infectious the strains of flu are in that year
• How closely the flu vaccine matches the flu strain
• How careful people are to avoid getting the flu
Approximately 3-7.5 million Canadians will get the flu in any given year.
• Children younger than five years old (especially those younger than two years old)
• Women who are pregnant
• Aboriginal people
• People with chronic conditions such as:
◦ Heart disease
◦ Liver disease
◦ Kidney disease
◦ Blood disorders
◦ Severe obesity
◦ Asthma and chronic lung disease
◦ Immunosuppression (people taking cancer drugs or people with HIV/AIDS)
◦ Neurological disorders
• Children aged 6-23 months
• Adults and children with chronic heart and lung disease and chronic conditions such as diabetes, anemia, cancer, HIV or kidney disease
• People living in a nursing home
• People aged 65 and over
• Children and adolescents on long-term aspirin (ASA) therapy
• Healthy pregnant women
• Health care workers; caregivers
• Children younger than six months
• People who have had an allergic reaction to the flu vaccine in the past. People with severe allergic reaction to eggs are able to receive the flu vaccine, but there may be some restrictions (talk to your Pharmacist for more information).
• Those dealing with an acute illness, an infection or a fever. You should postpone the flu shot until you are in better health.
- A/Brisbane/02/2018 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;
- A/Kansas/14/2017 (H3N2)-like virus;
- B/Colorado/06/2017-like virus;
Quadrivalent (four-component) vaccines, which protect against a second lineage of B viruses, are recommended to contain:
- the three recommended viruses above, plus B/Phuket/3073/2013-like virus
We expect to have the following vaccines available for immunizations:
- Trivalent Inactivated Influenza Vaccines (TIIV ): Agriflu® (DIN: 66124873), Fluviral® (DIN: 66124765)
- Quadrivalent Inactivated Influenza Vaccines (QIIV ): Fluzone® Quadrivalent (DIN: 66128073), Flulaval® Tetra (DIN: 66128005)
- Trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine (TIV): Agriflu® (DIN: 02346850), Fluad® (DIN: 02362384), Fluzone® (DIN: 02420643), Influvac® (DIN: 02484854)
- Quadrivalent inactivated influenza vaccine (QIIV ): Flulaval® Tetra (DIN: 240783), Fluzone® Quadrivalent (DIN: 2420643), Fluzone HD® (DIN: 02445646)
Fluzone High-Dose is an inactivated influenza vaccine that is approved for adults 65 years of age and older. This vaccine is not provided for free in B.C. but is available for purchase. The public vaccines will be available at no charge for eligible patients.
Anyone not eligible for a free influenza vaccine can receive it privately.
• If you feel faint or short of breath, or experience chest tightness, inform the pharmacist.
• In extremely rare instances, an allergic reaction may occur. The pharmacist is prepared to handle this.
• Redness at the needle site
Exercising the arm or applying a cold pack later in the day will minimize the discomfort; if necessary take ibuprofen or acetaminophen to ease the pain.
The rare side effects following the flu shot are:
• Muscle soreness
Symptoms may start 6-12 hours after the flu shot. If any of these symptoms do not go away in 1-2 days or get worse see your doctor.
Extremely rare side effects following the flu shot
• Shortness of breath
• Tightness in chest
• Feeling of faintness or weakness
• Swelling of lips
If any of these symptoms occur, you could be having a severe reaction to the vaccine. This is a medical emergency! Call for HELP! Go to the nearest emergency clinic. Report any reactions to your doctor.
• Maintain a healthy and active lifestyle
• Wash your hands frequently, and for at least 20 seconds, using warm water and soap
• When soap and water are not available, use an anti-bacterial hand sanitizer
• Use a tissue when you sneeze or cough and throw away used tissues and wash your hands immediately
• If a tissue is not available, sneeze or cough into your elbow or upper arm to avoid spreading germs to your hands
• Clean household surfaces and children’s toys often
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth if you think you may have come in contact with flu germs
• Don’t share drinking glasses or eating utensils
• Give each family member his/her own towel
• Try to avoid crowds during the flu season
• If you have the flu, stay at home
• Children aged 6-23 months – these children may be more likely to develop complications from the flu and are more likely to be hospitalized because of them
• Adults and children with chronic diseases that require them to have regular medical attention or hospital care, e.g., chronic heart and lung disease and chronic conditions such as diabetes, anemia, cancer, weakened immune systems, cystic fibrosis, HIV or kidney disease
• Children and adolescents on long-term aspirin (ASA) therapy – people with these conditions are more likely to develop complications if they get the flu
• People aged 65 and over – seniors have the highest rate of hospitalization and death from the flu. The most common complications in seniors include bacterial infection and pneumonia. NOTE: the flu vaccine may be less effective in this population, so it is very important that all family members, health care providers, and caregivers have a flu shot to better protect seniors.
• Healthy pregnant women – pregnant women are not more likely to get the flu, but they are more likely to develop complications if they do get the flu because during pregnancy the immune system that helps fight off disease is less effective
The flu is a serious illness and can lead to serious complications, hospitalization and even death. Every flu season is different and the flu affects everyone differently as well. Many people think that only people with health problems need an annual flu vaccination. This is NOT true. Healthy people can also get very sick from the flu and spread it to others. The flu can leave you ill for up to seven days or more. The good news is that flu vaccination effectiveness is greatest among healthy adults and older children. Everyone six months of age and older should have an annual flu vaccination.
Get your flu vaccination early in the flu season so that you are already protected when the flu starts circulating in your community. It takes about two weeks for your body to become protected from the flu vaccination. Once you have been vaccinated, you will have the benefits of protection for as long as the flu is circulating. An annual vaccination is needed because protection from the vaccination will decline over the year. In addition, the circulating flu strain changes every year and every year the flu vaccine is formulated to match the current strain to help protect against the flu more effectively. So for the best protection, an annual vaccination is recommended.