It is getting harder to find the flu vaccine in Saskatchewan, but the arrival of thousands of new doses could help.

Additional doses arrive

On Monday, health officials said they have access to about 28,000 doses, including:

  • 12,000 nasal mists from Quebec.
  • 9,000 doses of injectable (from Ontario and Dept. of National Defence).
  • 7,000 doses of injectable from various points in Saskatchewan (Officials asked all the health regions to identify remaining stock).

The vaccines will be made available to regions in what was described as a fair manner, taking into account population and immunization rates in each region.

The total number of people who can get immunized with these supplies is less than 28,000 because children who have never had a flu vaccine before need two shots.

The nasal mists can be used from ages 2 to 59.

The nasal mists can not be used on infants, pregnant women and immuno-compromised patients.

The province's priority groups remain in place.

Regina ran out on the weekend and, following weekend clinics that drew lineups, Saskatoon's remaining supply is unknown.

Mass immunization clinics were held earlier this month, but last week the province said supplies were low and from now on, the focus will be pregnant women and children under five years old.

There are still some health regions where people can go to get the flu shot by appointment, including Prince Albert Parkland, Sun Country and Kelsey Trail health.

For the time being, walk-in clinics have been cancelled in those regions. 

The Sunrise Health Region in east-central Saskatchewan had clinics scheduled for today, but those have been cancelled, too.

Here's the current status of flu shots in Saskatchewan's health regions:

1. Cypress — Drop in vaccination clinics for children and pregnant women Jan. 15 1-4 p.m. and Jan. 16, 9 a.m. to close.
2. Five Hills — No clinics scheduled, no appointments.
3. Heartland — Almost out of vaccines, taking names and waiting to find out about new vaccine availability.
4. Keewatin Yatthé — Not known.
5. Kelsey Trail — Vaccines available to high risk groups by appointment only.
6. Mamawetan Churchill River — Mass flu clinic in La Ronge cancelled Monday.
7. Prairie North — Mass flu clinics still happening today (Meadow Lake and Battlefords), and later in the month (Battlefords and Lloydminister)
8. Prince Albert Parkland — Vaccines available to high risk groups by appointment only.
9. Regina Qu'Appelle — Completely out
10. Saskatoon — Waiting on ministry
11. Sun Country — Vaccines available to high risk groups by appointment only.
12. Sunrise — No clinics scheduled for Monday. Meeting this morning to assess vaccine supply for the upcoming clinics. Website still lists clinics later this month for Yorkton, Melville, Foam Lake.

Seven Saskatchewan people have died this flu season after contracting the virus, although it has not been determined to what extent flu was responsible for the deaths.