Spotlight: Dr. Kraft shares the importance of getting the flu shot

Blog Post

Across the Northwest Territories, the respiratory season’s influenza activity, commonly known as the flu, is more than double that of the previous season.  

The flu can impact anyone but a great way to reduce your risk of getting sick and protected the people around you, is by getting vaccinated. Dr. Claudia Kraft, Territorial Medical Director, would like to share her advice on protecting yourself and the community as we see higher numbers of flu infections.

“The flu spreads easily and quickly through the coughs and sneezes of people who are infected with the virus. It doesn’t matter how healthy or active you may be, you can still become sick with the flu. While some groups are at higher risk of becoming seriously ill (needing hospitalization or even dying), serious illness can also affect young and healthy people.”

“It is important to get the flu shot every year as it provides you with newest vaccine, reduces your risk of getting infected and you will be more likely to experience milder symptoms if you do get the flu. By getting the vaccine, you’re not only protecting yourself but also helping stop the flu from spreading to others in the community, especially our more vulnerable populations such as young children, elderly individuals, and those who may have weaker immune systems.”

“The Northwest Territories Health and Social Services Authority (NTHSSA) offer mass flu clinic opportunities across the NWT each year that allows for an easy and convenient way for people to get vaccinated, and then smaller flu clinics are provided or people can book an appointment at their local health centre. It’s the simplest thing you can do to stay on top of your own health and protect the community. It also helps reduce the strain on our hospitals and clinics, as vaccination can reduce the number of people who need to be cared for in health centres, clinics, and hospitals due to the flu. Sometimes it’s the little things that can make a huge difference.”

The flu season isn’t over, and we continue to see respiratory viruses spread across the territory and impact individuals, communities, and our health and social services system.  It’s not to late in the season for you and/or your family to get vaccinated. For residents in Yellowknife, you can book a vaccination appointment with Public Health by calling 867-767-9120 or submit a callback request form.  

For residents outside Yellowknife, contact your local health centre.

The 811 health advice line (toll free: 1-844-259-1793) is available if you would like to speak with a registered nurse. If you are feeling unwell or part of a group at higher risk of serious illness, it’s especially important to speak with a nurse early in on if you feel sick to see if you may benefit from treatment that might lower your risk of becoming seriously ill. Our registered nurses are available 24/7 to provide you with confidential health advice and support.