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Thursday, September 18, 2014
Saskatchewan

SASKATCHEWAN INFLUENZA IMMUNIZATION CLINICS TO RESUME

Health Canada Clears Novartis Vaccine for Use

Public influenza immunization clinics are resuming in Saskatchewan.

Health Canada has confirmed that flu vaccine made by the pharmaceutical firm Novartis is safe for use. It lifted a precautionary hold on the vaccines today. Health Canada found no safety issues with the vaccines, based on its own testing, information provided by its European partners and data submitted by Novartis.

Saskatchewan flu clinics were put on temporary hold October 26 following the discovery of clumping of particles within European Novartis vaccine. The European batch was different than that supplied to Canada.

"We have full confidence in the safety and effectiveness of our immunization program, and we're pleased to be able to resume immunization clinics," Saskatchewan's Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Saqib Shahab said. "Influenza vaccine is an effective way for people to stay healthy during flu season, and we encourage people to be vaccinated."

Health regions will be rescheduling their influenza vaccination clinics immediately, and will be informing local residents about clinic dates, times and locations as soon as the information is available.

People who have already received a Novartis influenza vaccine do not need to be revaccinated.

Additional information about influenza vaccination is available at www.health.gov.sk.ca/influenza-flu or at http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ahc-asc/media/advisories-avis/_2012/2012_164-eng.php.

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For more information, contact:

Tyler McMurchy
Health
Regina
Phone: 3306-787-4083
Email: tmcmurchy@health.gov.sk..ca
Cell: 306-537-3594

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