Vaccinate To Prevent Pneumonia

The Flu Season is fast approaching and just as you were told in previous years,  a flu shot is one of the simpler measures you can take to prevent a serious episode of the seasonal influenza.   This year while you are receiving your flu shot, ask if you should be receiving the vaccination against pneumonia as well.  One of the major complications that can occur following infection with influenza is pneumonia.

Every Albertan over the age of 65 is eligible to receive the vaccination free of charge, along with those under 65 who are at risk of serious complications if they develop the condition.

Those between 2 and 65 years of age who should receive the immunization include:

  • Chronic heart, liver or kidney disease
  • Chronic lung disease (except asthma)
  • Alcoholism
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic cerebral spinal leak
  • Spleen has been removed or does not work well
  • Sickle cell disease
  • HIV infection
  • Other immune illnesses or conditions
  • Malignancies
  • People living in homeless / chronic disadvantaged situations
  • Living in Continuing Care or other long term care facility

In most cases, only one dose of the vaccine against pneumonia per lifetime is required. This immunization can be given at any time of the year and can be administered at the same time as the influenza vaccine.

It is important to know your immunization history to ensure that your immunizations are up to date and that you are fully protected. Bring your Health Passport with you to all immunization appointments so that it can be stamped for future reference. If you are unsure of your immunization history, check with your family physician or Community Health Center to see if which vaccine-preventable diseases you are protected against.

We have a pharmacist on staff with prescribing authority, so there is no need to make a special visit to your physician for that prescription.   The pharmacist after a medical history and evaluation can prescribe this vaccination for you.  Come in and discuss this with any of our pharmacists.

For more information about pneumonia and its prevention, speak with one of our pharmacists today.

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