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Busting flu myths

It’s flu season! Have you had your flu shot yet? Runnymede prides itself on having one of the highest vaccination rates among its peer hospitals in the Greater Toronto Area. Not only do you protect yourself from influenza when you get vaccinated, you are helping to protect the most vulnerable among us, including our patients.

Think you don’t need to get the flu shot or that the flu is just an extra bad cold you can deal with? Wrong. We break down some of the myths about the flu and provide you with the real reasons to get vaccinated:

Myth: I don’t need to get my flu shot.

Fact: Babies under six months of age are too young to get the flu shot and are among the most at risk of being hospitalized after the flu. Their safety depends on the rest of us getting the shot.

Myth: The flu is just a bad cold.

Fact: Influenza may cause cold-like symptoms but it is a serious disease that can be fatal, even for normally healthy adults. Influenza and its complications cause roughly 3,500 deaths per year in Canada.

Myth: You can get the flu from the vaccine.

Fact: The vaccine is made from an inactive virus that can’t transmit infection. The vaccine causes no side effects in most people. Your sniffles are just a coincidence!

Myth: Antibiotics can fight the flu.

Fact: Antibiotics can only fight bacterial infections and do not work on viruses such as colds and flu.

Help fight sickness and keep everyone safe this flu season. Get your flu shot today!