N.B. launches seasonal flu vaccination program

New Brunswick's deputy chief medical health officer feels confident about the way the Health Department is rolling out its flu vaccination programs.

Dr. Paul Van Buynder made the comments Thursday, while announcing the start of the seasonal flu vaccination program.

Swine-flu immunizations will follow in early November, he said.Influenza hasn't hit New Brunswick, and Van Buynder said he doesn't expect either virus to appear in the next couple of weeks.

By the end of the immunization schedules, "We will have protected all the residents of New Brunswick against seasonal influenza and against pandemic influenza, and the discussions regarding the studies and who is right and who is wrong will not matter in New Brunswick because everybody's protected against both viruses," said Van Buynder.

Unlike New Brunswick, many provinces are delaying giving their seasonal flu shots until the swine flu vaccine programs are completed.

Recent studies suggest people who receive the seasonal flu shot could be at greater risk of getting the swine flu.

Van Buynder maintains the studies are preliminary and don't back other, similar studies.

He urges people over 65, pregnant women, children between six months and 23 months, and people with chronic conditions to get the seasonal flu shot within the next two weeks.


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