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January 13, 2006
Numbers at flu clinics increase, final dates next week
Dr. David McKeown, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health, reported today that the number of people taking advantage of Toronto Public Health’s free influenza vaccination clinics increased almost 14 per cent in 2005, compared to 2004.

Some 47,405 people were vaccinated in the first round of clinics, held between October 25 and November 30, 2005. The final round of four free clinics will be held at the City’s Civic Centres next week, starting Monday.

“As we move further into flu season, there’s still time to protect yourself and your family by being vaccinated,” Dr. McKeown said.

The flu clinics are part of a provincially-funded campaign administered by public health units and health professionals throughout the province. Ontario is the first jurisdiction in North America to make flu shots available to the general public at no cost.

Each year the flu vaccine is designed to protect against the dominant strains of flu virus in circulation. The vaccine is considered 70 to 90 per cent effective in preventing the flu in the majority of people. Studies have shown that vaccination can reduce flu-related hospitalizations by 60 per cent among the elderly and flu-related deaths by up to 85 per cent.

The clinics are as follows:
• Monday, January 16 - East York Civic Centre, 850 Coxwell Ave.
• Tuesday, January 17 - North York Civic Centre, 5100 Yonge St.
• Wednesday, January 18 - Etobicoke Civic Centre, 399 The West Mall
• Thursday, January 19 - Scarborough Civic Centre, 150 Borough Dr.

All clinics are open from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

For more information about influenza and the schedule of clinics, call 1-877-844-1944 or visit

Media contact:
Gil Hardy
Toronto Public Health



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