Flu immunization clinics are resuming in the Five Hills Health Region (FHHR).
The clinics were cancelled pending a Health Canada review of the flu vaccine made by the pharmaceutical firm Novartis. Clumping particles were discovered in the vaccine.
However, after further information, Health Canada testing and information provided by European health agencies, the temporary ban was lifted this week.
“They were able to determine that it’s quite safe and that they were fine with it,” said FHHR medical officer Dr. Mark Vooght. “What we didn’t know initially and what we know now is that the batch that had the little particles in it, the clumping … that batch was a unique batch. It never left Italy as we were informed and it was actually pulled out immediately and it was not administered to anyone.”
He said the good news was that the 120,000 people in the province who have already received the flu vaccine do not need to be revaccinated. There are no concerns about the safety or effectiveness of the Novartis flu vaccine in Canada.
For more information, see an upcoming edition of the Times-Herald.