Manitoba expands eligibility for high-dose flu vaccine
When flu season rolls around, the Manitoba government is ensuring more people are being protected from severe illness.
The government announced Wednesday it is expanding eligibility for the high-dose influenza vaccine to include all adults 65 and older.
"Planning is already well underway for this fall's seasonal flu campaign and this is an important change that will protect more older adults," said Health Minister Audrey Gordon in a news release.
Currently, the vaccine is given to people 65 and older who meet eligibility requirements such as those living in long-term facilities or assisted living homes.
"Older adults have a higher risk of flu complications, so protecting seniors is especially important," said Seniors and Long-term Care Minister Scott Johnston in a news release.
The government said this change is in line with recommendations from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization.
"There is good evidence the high-dose influenza vaccine provides better protection for older adults compared to the standard dose influenza vaccine," said Dr. Brent Roussin, the chief provincial public health officer, in a news release.
He added expanding the eligibility will help improve outcomes among the age group and reduce illness, hospitalization and death.
The high-dose and standard flu vaccines are available to eligible Manitobans at no cost.
The province said more information about the flu vaccine campaign will be released in the coming months.