As of Thursday, the number of flu shots administered in Alberta was 916,184. Just two weeks prior, that number sat at 290,000.
That puts provincial coverage 20.7 per cent.
However, by this time last flu season, a total of 1,142,419 doses of vaccine had been administered. At this time during the 2020-2021 flu season, provincial coverage was 25.8 per cent.
This year, 82,916 doses of influenza vaccine have been administered by AHS, 775,035 doses by pharmacies and 53,337 doses administered by other providers.
When Alberta’s flu shot campaign began in October, chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw urged people to be vaccinated against influenza.
“To ease the strain caused by increased demand for COVID-19 and influenza testing, I urge every eligible Albertan to get the COVID-19 and influenza vaccines as soon as you are able to,” she said on Oct. 14.
“This will greatly reduce the number of people who get infected and the number of symptomatic people who need to be tested.”
So far in the 2021-2022 flu season, there have been three lab-confirmed cases of influenza in Alberta.
Last year, despite conducting about two and a half times the number of flu tests than the year before, Alberta had no lab-confirmed cases of influenza or deaths from to the virus.
Any Albertan over the age of six months can receive a flu vaccine for free and public health clinics will offer the vaccine for kids aged five and under and their families.
Many community pharmacies and doctor’s offices also offer the vaccine.