The flu has arrived in BC

The flu season is underway in BC - with cases popping up already - mostly in personal care facilities.

Interior Health Manager of Communicable Diseases and Immunization Programs, Pamela de Bruin, says 210-thousand doses of vaccine have been ordered this year to combat the H1N1 and H3N2 strains. 

She says officials won't know how effective the vaccine will be until later this winter, but does acknowledge the vaccine in 2014-15 missed the mark.

"There was a lot of criticism - for example you should have known more sooner - but in fact, the World Health Organization bases the recommendations for the strains that are put in the vaccines on what was circulating in the summer in the southern hemisphere, and so it's about as good a prediction you can make for what we might experience in the north. It's not a perfect prediction because the virus mutates and changes," she says.  

De Bruin says last year, 220-thousand doses were ordered, but only 185-thousand-983 were administered.

Interior Health is encouraging those who are eligible for the free flu shot to get it at pharmacies, doctors' offices - and starting next week - at public health clinics.