Canadian public health authorities continue to offer the three-strain trivalent seasonal influenza vaccine (TIV) and the four-strain quadrivalent influenza vaccines (QIVs). TIVs help protect against two influenza A strains and one influenza B strain. QIVs can help protect against four different influenza virus strains, including the two influenza A strains and two influenza B strains. QIVs help reduce the possibility of B strain mismatches, which could result in better protection against the flu, enhanced public confidence and better annual vaccine uptake.
Annual immunization is the most effective method of preventing influenza and its complications. The effects of the flu vaccine can wear off, so you need to get a new one every year to stay protected. It’s a simple action that can save lives.
Influenza immunization programs focus on three groups of people:
- those at high risk of influenza-related complications
- those capable of spreading influenza to individuals at high risk of complications
- those who provide essential community services
With the immunization of nurses, CNA’s position is that they should receive the vaccine each year to protect themselves, their families and those in their care. Read CNA’s Influenza Immunization of Nurses [PDF, 125 KB] position statement for more details.
Influenza vaccine 2020-2021
According to the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI), inactivated influenza vaccine and live attenuated influenza vaccine will both be available in Canada for the 2020-2021 influenza season. Also, in anticipation of the circulation of COVID-19 during the fall, NACI has developed guidance on influenza vaccine delivery to help mitigate the risks and provide strategies to address challenges during this influenza season.
Updated wording for the recommendation on the vaccination of health-care workers
NACI has reviewed the wording for the recommendation on the vaccination of health-care workers (HCWs). NACI continues to recommend that HCWs in facilities and community settings should be vaccinated annually against influenza and should remain included in the group who are particularly recommended. Read NACI’s statement for more information.
Recommendation on the use of LAIV in HIV-infected individuals
NACI has reviewed the evidence and has provided a discretionary recommendation that LAIV may be considered as an option for children 2-17 years of age with stable HIV infection on highly active antiretroviral therapy and with adequate immune function. NACI has concluded that LAIV is immunogenic with this population, and although there is insufficient evidence to detect uncommon or rare adverse events in this context, LAIV appears to have a similar safety profile as inactivated influenza vaccine. Read NACI’s statement for more information.
2020-2021 seasonal influenza campaign
The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) and Immunize Canada provide tools and resources to keep you informed throughout the flu season.
PHAC: posters, handouts, videos and guides on seasonal flu from 2019- 2020 are available on their website.
Immunize Canada: click the images below to download PDF files of this year’s influenza immunization resources or visit their website.