Alberta Health Services says it has secured additional doses of influenza vaccine which will be available to infants that recently turned six months old and children who require a second dose.

AHS will now be offering influenza vaccine to all children who turned, or will turn, six months of age, on or after December 1, 2013, through to March 31, 2014.

The vaccine also continues to be offered to all children under nine years of age who received a first dose of influenza vaccine this season and still require a second dose.

Parents of children in either of these groups should call Health Link Alberta, or their local Public Health Office, for information on obtaining the vaccine for their child.

AHS says the vaccine is no longer available for Albertans outside of the above two groups.

The health agency is asking all Albertans to continue their vigilance in preventing the further spread of illness and has these preventative tips:

  • Cover your cough: Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when sneezing or coughing. If you don’t have a tissue, always cough or sneeze into your arm, not into your hands. Throw away tissues after wiping your nose or covering a cough, and wash your hands.
  • Clean your hands:Using soap and warm water, wash your hands thoroughly and often, including after coughing, sneezing, using tissues or the washroom, and before eating or preparing foods. Alcohol-based hand rub or sanitizer can also be helpful if hands are not visibly soiled. Make a point of keeping hands and fingers away from your eyes, nose and mouth. 
  • Stay home when sick: If you have symptoms of influenza, including fever, cough, headache and extreme tiredness, stay home from work, school, daycare, or any social function. Please also refrain from visiting family, friends or loved ones in hospitals, care facilities or seniors lodges, until you have fully recovered from any illness, including influenza.