The U.S. is experiencing the flu pandemic at an unprecedented pace, but many Canadians aren’t getting vaccinated, and the federal government is taking a big hit.
The federal government says the cost of providing a flu vaccine to Canadians will increase to $600 for every household that has one, a jump of $300 from the current rate of $250.
A spokesperson for Health Canada says there are currently no plans to increase the cost to the general public.
The spokesperson says it’s important to note that influenza vaccination coverage has remained stable since the first pandemic in 2009, and it’s the federal Government’s responsibility to provide the vaccine.
“We are currently delivering a vaccine to the Canadian population, which means the cost for that is going up and we are going to be working on the pricing to ensure we are in line with other developed countries in the world,” said spokesperson Catherine Cote.
According to Health Canada, only one in three Canadians are currently eligible to get vaccinated, but they are currently offering free flu shots to anyone who wants them.
For people who have received a flu jab and have missed out on getting a flu shots in the past, the federal spokesperson says the federal flu vaccine is available at no cost to Canadians.
With files from the CBC’s Chris Nolte and the Canadian Press