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The Flu Hits Seniors the Hardest; Get Immunized Now

Posted by Brian Shevel on 6 October 2014

October is Influenza Immunization Awareness Month, so with cold and flu season coming upon us, Home Care Assistance - Toronto/York Region, the leading provider of in-home care in Woodbridge and the surrounding regions, would like to remind our clients that it is especially important for seniors to get the flu shot.

The flu can hit children and seniors especially hard, making it imperative that your loved one receives their flu shot as soon as possible. Our home care assistance in Woodbridge includes taking clients to doctors' appointments and we also provide reminders about getting the flu shot. It's still early, so you stand a good chance of avoiding the flu if you get your shot now. As a provider of in-home senior care, we can provide you with a list of clinics in your area that offer flu shots.

The flu is a highly contagious virus that can be spread through coughing, sneezing, or even just talking to someone. A single drop of saliva from a sick person is loaded with the virus and can cause infection if it gets in the mouth or nose. As a safety precaution, our in-home care workers wear masks in addition to receiving immunization themselves.

Each year, influenza affects millions of Canadians. While most will get sick for seven to 10 days, the virus can hit older people especially hard. If they have weakened immune systems, catching the flu can cause serious issues that may even require hospitalization. Being infected with the flu carries the risk of developing complications such as pneumonia, an ailment that can be deadly in seniors. Approximately, 10% to 20% of Canadians get sick each year; up to 12,200 people end up in the hospital and 3,500 may pass away. Since seniors are one of the groups that are the most at risk, we can't emphasize the importance of getting their flu shot early enough.

Seniors who live in nursing homes are especially vulnerable to the flu. In-home care is one way to prevent your loved one from developing the flu. But, if they go to visit any friends who live in a nursing home or retirement community, we strongly recommend that they receive immunization against the flu since they don't want to bring the bug into the facility and vice versa.

We also realize that those who provide in-home senior care must take extra care during cold and flu season. That is why we have our in-home care workers immunized at the start of cold and flu season: to ensure the safety of our valued clients. If you have elderly family members, we recommend that you receive your flu shot or, if you get sick, avoid contact with them until you are healthy again. Our home care assistance in Woodbridge will take care of your loved one for you, so you can "quarantine" yourself and focus on getting better.

If, despite your best efforts, your loved one ends up getting sick, our in-home care workers will stay with them to ensure they get better quickly by resting and drinking plenty of fluids. Our in-home senior care workers will also ensure that they take any medication and go to any medical appointments. If necessary, they will also take them to the hospital at the first sign of the flu worsening.



Government of Canada, "Flu (Influenza)," last updated September 19, 2014; www.healthycanadians.gc.ca/diseases-conditions-maladies-affections/disease-maladie/flu-grippe/index-eng.php

Brian ShevelAuthor: Brian Shevel
About: I am originally from South Africa from a small city called Bloemfontein. After I completed my education, I went to work with my late-father who had a wholesale business selling clothes and shoes to retail stores around the country. I was in the business till I left for Canada in 1993. In Canada, I have run several businesses in a variety of industries. Although I experienced success, I missed helping people. I learned from my parents that helping seniors was important to their well-being and of great value to the community. Volunteer work remains a priority in my life. I am a past president of Bnai Brith and serve on many other committees.
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