While Greater Victoria is close to the end of flu season, there’s a chance another batch of cases may be seen in the next month or so. Black Press files

Worst is over, but flu bugs could linger around Victoria

Unusual season saw both influenza A and B strains experienced in region

As flu season nears its end, Island Health warns that we’re not quite out of the woods yet, and there could still be another wave in late February or March.

Dr. Dee Hoyano, Island Health medical health officer, said this year was an unusual one as two separate strains hit the region.

“Typically we get influenza A and then later on we get more of B,” she said. “This year it’s been a real mixed bag and we’ve seen B earlier this year.”

While peak activity has passed, Hoyano said the health authority was prepared for the high volume of flu cases seen this year. Across the Island, 248,000 doses of vaccine were distributed, an increase of roughly 20,000 from last season.

“In terms of what we’re actually seeing on the ground, the majority of people going into hospital [with the flu] are the elderly or others suffering with chronic ailments,” she explained, adding the surge in visits is always expected around influenza time.

RELATED: Getting influenza raises heart attack risk, especially in seniors: study

A recent Canadian study published in the New England Journal of Medicine linked the occurrence of heart attacks with influenza. The risk of suffering a heart attack is six times higher in the seven days after you’ve been diagnosed with the flu, it stated.

“We know it is a systematic infection,” Hoyano said. “The [flu puts] a lot of stress on your body; your immune system is working harder and often times it puts demand on your heart and lungs.”

Knowing your health status and that of your family members is important when deciding whether or not to get the flu shot, Hoyano said. “The vaccine is really important … for people who are at higher risk of heart disease,” she added.

And, if you want to get the flu shot, there’s still time. The vaccine protects against multiple strains of influenza, even if you’ve already been sick. To find out if you’re eligible for the free flu vaccine, visit VIHA.ca/flu.

kristyn.anthony@vicnews.com

Just Posted

District of Oak Bay issues notice to cease tent city

The notice is effective immediately

Vancouver Island homeowners buy more earthquake insurance than the rest of B.C.

Insurance Bureau of Canada says that’s because the perception of risk is greater on the Island

UPDATE: Tent city campers told to leave Oak Bay, given outstanding bill

Police department delivers $1,882 bill for damages from fall of 2017

Persons Day celebrates historic achievement of five suffragettes

Landmark case 89 years ago declared women “persons” making them eligible for the Senate

‘Leaning tower’ rental building proposed for downtown Victoria

The building would offer 93 residential units targeted at young professionals

B.C. NDP retreats again on empty-home tax for urban areas

Rate reduced for all Canadians, dissident mayors to get annual meeting

Find your future at Black Press career fair in Victoria

More than 70 booths expected at Bay Street Armoury on Oct. 25

Jets score 3 late goals to beat Canucks 4-1

Winnipeg ends three-game Vancouver win streak

POLL: Do you support amalgamation for communities in the Capital Region?

Residents in Victoria and Saanich will be voting on Oct. 20 on… Continue reading

San Group announces plans to build new sawmill in Port Alberni

San Group has purchased 25 acres of Catalyst Paper land for expansion

Two B.C. cannabis dispensaries raided on legalization day

Port Alberni dispensaries ticketed for “unlawful sale” of cannabis

Canada not sending anyone to Saudi business summit

Sources insist Ottawa never intended to dispatch a delegation this time around

VPD ordered to co-operate with B.C. police watchdog probe

According to the IIO, a court is ordering Vancouver police to co-operate with an investigation into a fatal shooting

Earthquake early-warning sensors installed off coast of B.C.

The first-of-its kind warning sensors are developed by Ocean Networks Canada

Most Read