Flu Shot Fear
Are you a flu shot person? I generally am not, and not because I fear them or buy into the hype of untold dangers inherent within them. I believe vaccines are about the most benign things you can put into your body, that is to say, even if they don't work, what harm can they do?
I don't like how flu shots are promoted at the work place now in the guise of good health, when really it's all about you not missing work and costing your employer a great deal of money. I can't bank my sick days or cash them in at the end of my tenure like some lucky unionized workers, so I almost look forward to that 3-5 day winter holiday known as flu season, where I can sit at home in an over-the-counter medicated daze and watch movies.
KNOW YOUR FLU SHOTS
It is somewhat disturbing that our own federal government has asked Novartis to stop distibuting Fluad and Agriflu (what unfortunate names) vaccines while they investigate reports of tiny clumps of virus particles in some batches. In Saskatchewan they have halted flu clinics for the time being. Several European countries (Italy, Germany, Switzerland) have done the same.
NOTE: Novartis supplies about 20% of Canada's flu vaccines, GlaxoSmithKline supplies most of the rest. Fluad is licensed for people 65 and older. Most say that this “clumping” is not uncommon and does not affect health or effecacy.
What this tells me that you must become a smart consumer on flu shots just like anything else. This year drugstores offer them as well. Ask for the brand, ask about clumping, and ask about the conditions of administration, ie, is everyone confident no outside contaminants are part of that needle going into your forearm. OR, ask at the drugstore if you can drop “trou” and take it in the butt cheek. (Just kidding on that last one.)
There is no “dangerous” influenza strain so far that we have heard of for this season, and everyone should make their own decision on flu shots. However, if you do get one, be a wise consumer and know the whole story. LEAVE COMMENTS.
For other Larry Fedoruk blogs and features, click here.