Better safe than sorry

News Oct 30, 2009 Ancaster News

Huge line-ups and long wait times at local H1N1 clinics this week don’t shed enough light on the real story of how many Canadians view the controversial mass vaccination program.

Many of those deemed at high risk took advantage of advice from the medical community and governments to get the H1N1 flu shot. However, even more remain unconvinced of clear evidence regarding this world-wide pandemic.

A recent Canadian Press Harris-Decima poll suggests only a third of the population will get the shot, leading governments and medical officers of health to ramp up messages surrounding the importance of the H1N1 vaccination program.

A sweeping ad campaign has already begun, and will continue in the coming weeks as the clinics extend to the general population, as well as those deemed at high risk.

Let there be no doubt -the H1N1 threat is real. More than 30 deaths in Ontario have been linked to the H1N1 virus.

Ultimately, the choice is yours. The vaccination is being made available across Hamilton at various locations. Visit www.myhamilton.ca for specific information on clinic locations and times.

Regardless of personal views on the H1N1 shot, everyone needs to remain cautious. According to Hamilton’s public health department, if you have flu-like symptoms, stay home and get as much rest as you can. This will help you to get better and prevent others from catching the flu.

If you are pregnant or at increased risk of complications, contact your health-care provider.

Public Health is promising there will be sufficient vaccine for every Hamilton resident who needs or wants to be vaccinated.

There are also everyday actions that can help prevent the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses like the flu:

• Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.

• Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.

• Try to avoid close contact with sick people.

As indicated by recent polls, many Canadians still believe H1N1 has been blown out-of-proportion by the media, governments and public health officials.

Whatever your opinion, this is not the time to be aloof or righteous. The evidence is painfully clear –H1N1 is killing healthy people. This is a serious threat, and regardless of personal decisions regarding vaccination, we all need to practise common sense and concern.

Respiratory outbreaks are occurring across Hamilton schools, boosting evidence that the second wave of H1N1 is a real and present danger.

Local emergency rooms are being inundated with people complaining of flu-like symptoms.

It’s important to re-emphasize some important facts to dispel myths regarding the H1N1 vaccine.

1. The vaccine cannot give you influenza, because it doesn't contain a live virus.

2. Health Canada, based on the results of thousands of clinical trials around the world, is satisfied the vaccine is safe.

3. Pregnant women are one of the most at-risk groups. Their chances of getting very sick and potentially dying from swine flu are four to five times higher than for nonpregnant women, according to experts.

4. 5,000 people have died worldwide, and hundreds of thousands of people have been infected with H1N1.

The choice is yours. Better safe or sorry?

Better safe than sorry

News Oct 30, 2009 Ancaster News

Huge line-ups and long wait times at local H1N1 clinics this week don’t shed enough light on the real story of how many Canadians view the controversial mass vaccination program.

Many of those deemed at high risk took advantage of advice from the medical community and governments to get the H1N1 flu shot. However, even more remain unconvinced of clear evidence regarding this world-wide pandemic.

A recent Canadian Press Harris-Decima poll suggests only a third of the population will get the shot, leading governments and medical officers of health to ramp up messages surrounding the importance of the H1N1 vaccination program.

A sweeping ad campaign has already begun, and will continue in the coming weeks as the clinics extend to the general population, as well as those deemed at high risk.

Let there be no doubt -the H1N1 threat is real. More than 30 deaths in Ontario have been linked to the H1N1 virus.

Ultimately, the choice is yours. The vaccination is being made available across Hamilton at various locations. Visit www.myhamilton.ca for specific information on clinic locations and times.

Regardless of personal views on the H1N1 shot, everyone needs to remain cautious. According to Hamilton’s public health department, if you have flu-like symptoms, stay home and get as much rest as you can. This will help you to get better and prevent others from catching the flu.

If you are pregnant or at increased risk of complications, contact your health-care provider.

Public Health is promising there will be sufficient vaccine for every Hamilton resident who needs or wants to be vaccinated.

There are also everyday actions that can help prevent the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses like the flu:

• Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.

• Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.

• Try to avoid close contact with sick people.

As indicated by recent polls, many Canadians still believe H1N1 has been blown out-of-proportion by the media, governments and public health officials.

Whatever your opinion, this is not the time to be aloof or righteous. The evidence is painfully clear –H1N1 is killing healthy people. This is a serious threat, and regardless of personal decisions regarding vaccination, we all need to practise common sense and concern.

Respiratory outbreaks are occurring across Hamilton schools, boosting evidence that the second wave of H1N1 is a real and present danger.

Local emergency rooms are being inundated with people complaining of flu-like symptoms.

It’s important to re-emphasize some important facts to dispel myths regarding the H1N1 vaccine.

1. The vaccine cannot give you influenza, because it doesn't contain a live virus.

2. Health Canada, based on the results of thousands of clinical trials around the world, is satisfied the vaccine is safe.

3. Pregnant women are one of the most at-risk groups. Their chances of getting very sick and potentially dying from swine flu are four to five times higher than for nonpregnant women, according to experts.

4. 5,000 people have died worldwide, and hundreds of thousands of people have been infected with H1N1.

The choice is yours. Better safe or sorry?

Better safe than sorry

News Oct 30, 2009 Ancaster News

Huge line-ups and long wait times at local H1N1 clinics this week don’t shed enough light on the real story of how many Canadians view the controversial mass vaccination program.

Many of those deemed at high risk took advantage of advice from the medical community and governments to get the H1N1 flu shot. However, even more remain unconvinced of clear evidence regarding this world-wide pandemic.

A recent Canadian Press Harris-Decima poll suggests only a third of the population will get the shot, leading governments and medical officers of health to ramp up messages surrounding the importance of the H1N1 vaccination program.

A sweeping ad campaign has already begun, and will continue in the coming weeks as the clinics extend to the general population, as well as those deemed at high risk.

Let there be no doubt -the H1N1 threat is real. More than 30 deaths in Ontario have been linked to the H1N1 virus.

Ultimately, the choice is yours. The vaccination is being made available across Hamilton at various locations. Visit www.myhamilton.ca for specific information on clinic locations and times.

Regardless of personal views on the H1N1 shot, everyone needs to remain cautious. According to Hamilton’s public health department, if you have flu-like symptoms, stay home and get as much rest as you can. This will help you to get better and prevent others from catching the flu.

If you are pregnant or at increased risk of complications, contact your health-care provider.

Public Health is promising there will be sufficient vaccine for every Hamilton resident who needs or wants to be vaccinated.

There are also everyday actions that can help prevent the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses like the flu:

• Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.

• Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.

• Try to avoid close contact with sick people.

As indicated by recent polls, many Canadians still believe H1N1 has been blown out-of-proportion by the media, governments and public health officials.

Whatever your opinion, this is not the time to be aloof or righteous. The evidence is painfully clear –H1N1 is killing healthy people. This is a serious threat, and regardless of personal decisions regarding vaccination, we all need to practise common sense and concern.

Respiratory outbreaks are occurring across Hamilton schools, boosting evidence that the second wave of H1N1 is a real and present danger.

Local emergency rooms are being inundated with people complaining of flu-like symptoms.

It’s important to re-emphasize some important facts to dispel myths regarding the H1N1 vaccine.

1. The vaccine cannot give you influenza, because it doesn't contain a live virus.

2. Health Canada, based on the results of thousands of clinical trials around the world, is satisfied the vaccine is safe.

3. Pregnant women are one of the most at-risk groups. Their chances of getting very sick and potentially dying from swine flu are four to five times higher than for nonpregnant women, according to experts.

4. 5,000 people have died worldwide, and hundreds of thousands of people have been infected with H1N1.

The choice is yours. Better safe or sorry?