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    • Chris MacAskill

      My only thought when considering a flu vaccine has always been I’m healthy, I’ll take my chances. I never considered that me getting a shot might save someone’s life. Damn.

      It’s fascinating to actually do the math. If the vaccine is 50% effective on me and this is how many people I expose if I do get sick, and this is how many young & old people die each year from the flu... Okay, this year I’ll get the shot.

    • I started getting flu shots when I was working for a huge company. I was around a lot of people with children and I figured it was probably a good idea.

      I've continued to get them now that I am retired. I visit my 88-year-old mother on a fairly regular basis and I want to minimize my carrying bad things to her.

    • Got my flu shot weeks ago! I rarely get sick and am not sure I've ever even had the flu, but I get the shot to reduce the chance that I might infect someone who's not as healthy as me.

    • I've been getting the flu vac for many years.

      A few years ago I missed my appointment then never got around to having it. I got the flu that year, real bad, I'll never miss it again.

      My wife who had hers that year never caught the flu from me she was protected.

      The thinking now in Oz is not to have it too early as its peak effectiveness is for 3-4 months and the worst of our flu season tends to be towards the end of winter.

      Where I used to have it in early March I now have it end of April.

    • Oh, I didn't know it peaked. I just assumed once vaccinated for whatever this year's strains are, you're good to go.

      Speaking of Oz, your stats for diseases preventable by vaccines looks damn good:

    • We have had great results, but there is unfortunatly a growng number of militant anti vaxxer's.

      The recent sucsess story in Australia has been the 2007 intoduction of the Gardisal vaccine against HPV's in the schools.

      The results are fantastic, the program is already showing strong signs of success, HPV infections, and pre-cancers of the cervix are way down.

    • The argument for getting a flu vaccine is less about how healthy I am, and is largely about how healthy we all will be. This is about protecting everyone as a community. If you care about your community, then protect it. I rarely get sick myself - particularly in the flu season - precisely because I do get the vaccine every year.

      Here in Canada the flu shots are free, so there really is no reason not to get them. It is a public service that costs you nothing.

    • I got mine a few weeks ago. My work offered them this year at, during work hours, no cost to us and we didn't have to use a break or lunch time to go get the shot, paid for time to do this. I was surprised how many people didn't take advantage of this. I heard people say they didn't want to because shots hurt. Yikes! There are a lot of young parents with children in school and every year our work place has so many illness going through. I want any advantage I can get to keep from getting sick.

    • Hey rich, looking at the vaccination rates for Canada, they looked low. I would have thought and advanced, educated country like I know Canada to be, with free health care, would have higher numbers. Any idea why they are where they are? This from Statistics Canada:

      Highlights

      - Almost one-third of Canadians aged 12 and over got a flu vaccination in 2013–2014.
      - Nova Scotia had the greatest increase in the percentage of people getting a flu vaccination between 2003 and 2013–2014, while Ontario was the one province where the rate decreased.
      - 2013–2014 saw a higher flu vaccination rate among younger Canadians aged 12 to 44 (19%), compared with the 2003 rate (16%).

    • Those numbers surprise me as well, which I guess would suggest that it's not the "free" aspect of the service that is affecting their decision. I checked the Government of Canada website to check whether all provinces offer free flu vaccines and it turns out that three of our provinces and territories do not offer publicly funded flu vaccines. But our most populous province of Ontario does.

      I can only guess as to the reasons many do not vaccinate, but it may be that misinformation about its effectiveness ("I'm healthy, why should I bother?") and lack of understanding of the public healthy strategy is part of those decisions.

    You've been invited!