H1N1 flu virus update (09/11/06)
Nov. 6, 2009
FREDERICTON (CNB) - The following update on the H1N1 flu virus was issued by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health for New Brunswick on Friday, Nov. 6:
- New Brunswick is continuing to see widespread H1N1 flu activity.
- There have been no H1N1 flu deaths reported in the province.
- 140,000 New Brunswickers have been vaccinated against the H1N1 virus.
- As with other Canadian jurisdictions, New Brunswick is anticipating a lower-than-expected supply of H1N1 flu vaccine from the federal government over the next week.
- The priority groups for H1N1 vaccination clinics are now restricted to the following:
o front-line health-care workers;
o children aged six months to 18 years;
o parents of children younger than six months;
o pregnant women - 20 weeks or more;
o pregnant women - fewer than 20 weeks, but with underlying medical conditions; and
o First Nations individuals (on reserve, only).
- This restriction is in place to ensure that the highest priority groups are vaccinated the soonest.
- Those with chronic diseases should not go to the clinics being advertised. Plans are currently being developed with provincial chronic-disease specialists to reach these groups.
Details will be provided as soon as they are available.
- Individuals who are not members of a priority group should wait until clinics for other priority groups and the public are open later in November.
- It is very important that everyone work together to protect those most vulnerable.
- New Brunswick is scheduled to receive 40,000 doses of vaccine next week.
- While there is some supply of the vaccine, this amount is only half of the vaccine that the province was expecting.
- Limited supply of the vaccine will cause the Department of Health to continue to postpone clinics until more vaccine arrives. The department has been issuing updates on
postponed clinics through its public alerts system. The updates are also available on the web, and through 1-800-580-0038.
- Clinics for all pregnant women are currently being scheduled in every zone.
- Priority groups were developed after considerable consultation with various experts across Canada.
- Priority groups were assessed based on individual risks (if a person was more likely to have an adverse outcome or serious complication due to H1N1).
- Health-care workers, predominantly those who would care for individuals who became seriously ill from H1N1, were included in the priority groups.
- It was recognized that other essential-service workers could be included in other priority groups due to age, chronic condition or pregnancy. Therefore, these workers were not
placed on the priority list.
- Healthy individuals in these positions are not at any higher risk to contract H1N1 than the rest of the population.
- The Department of Health is working co-operatively with these groups so that they will have access to the vaccine once the people who need it the most are vaccinated first, and
more vaccine becomes available.New Brunswickers should continue to protect themselves and those around them by washing hands thoroughly and often, coughing or sneezing into sleeves, staying home if sick,
and keeping common surfaces clean.
- Persons at high risk of complications from influenza-like illness should seek medical attention promptly.
- Persons with influenza-like symptoms should stay home and minimize contact with family members as much as possible. If symptoms worsen, they should visit their physician or
nurse practitioner, a walk-in clinic, or the nearest hospital emergency department. Persons living in the Saint John area are asked to visit one of the flu assessment centres.
- If you are experiencing influenza-like symptoms, it is recommended that you limit contact with other people, including other household members, until you are free of symptoms
and are feeling well.
- Those experiencing influenza-like illness should consider ending self-isolation when they are able to participate fully in all of their normal daily activities.It is important for New Brunswickers to understand that if they do not have influenza-like symptoms, it is safe to go to work and school, to participate in activities and to
More information on the H1N1 flu virus may be found online or by calling the 24-hour H1N1 line, 1-800-580-0038.
MEDIA CONTACT: email@example.com; Danielle Phillips, media relations, H1N1 Pandemic, Department of Health, 506-444-3821.