How you can reduce the spread of influenza
It’s not too late to get your flu shot! Influenza vaccine is available from primary health care providers, such as family doctors and nurse practitioners, QuickCare Clinics or through public health offices by calling 204-956-SHOT.
How influenza is spread
Influenza (flu) viruses spread through invisible droplets.
Influenza spreads from person to person when an infected
person coughs or sneezes near another person. Spread
requires close contact between infected and uninfected
persons because droplets from coughs and sneezes travel
less than 2 metres and do not stay in the air. Surfaces
contaminated by droplets become a source of infection.
Getting these droplets onto your hands and then touching
your mouth, nose or eyes can spread influenza.
People with influenza
are infectious while they have
- Influenza immunization is the most important way
to prevent getting or spreading influenza
- Handwashing helps prevent infection
- Avoid contact with others when you have
- Wash your hands frequently throughout the day
and especially before preparing food or eating,
after going to the toilet and after coughing or
sneezing into your hands or facial tissue. Wash hands
thoroughly with soap and water for 20 seconds
including the thumbs, under the nails and the back of
- You may wish to supervise or help young children
wash their hands thoroughly. Children may be
reminded that they should use at least as much time
hand washing as it takes to sing Happy Birthday or
- In the absence of water and soap, hand sanitizer
containing at least 60% alcohol may be used. A
suitable substitute is a hand sanitizer containing
benzalkonium chloride or benzethonium chloride.
Cover your cough
- Cough or sneeze into your elbow or sleeve, or
into a tissue.
- After you cough or sneeze into your hands or
facial tissue, wash your hands.
Avoid contact with
others when you have influenza
- If you have any symptoms of influenza, especially
a new or worsening cough, avoid contact with others.
- If you have influenza symptoms such as a cough
and must be around others, wash your hands before
being with them, and be sure to cover your cough.
Also be sure to maintain a distance of 2 metres (6
feet) between you and them as much as possible.
- Consider limiting personal greetings such as hand
shaking, hugging, and kissing.