Interior Health says it hopes to be able to declare the meningococcal disease outbreak in Okanagan over on February 13th,
There have been no new cases since the outbreak was declared December 14th.
To date, 14 thousand 486 total immunizations have been conducted in the 15 to 19 year old age group across the Okanagan
That’s about 70 per cent of the target age group.
Medical Health Officer Dr. Karin Goodison is urging those in that age group who have not been immunized to do so before the outbreak is declared over.
Once that declaration is made, only students in grades 9 and 10 will be able to get the vaccine for free.
Dr Goodison adds that only 26 per cent of those aged 18 and 19 have been immunized.
They are also being urged to get the vaccine.
The Health Authority registered 12 cases of meningococcal disease in total in 2017.
It’s not been determined what led to the outbreak, which the Health Authority believes was the only one in Canada last year.
Dr Goodison says because of the high rate of Immunizations at this time, the Health Authority believes it will see fewer cases of the disease if any.
An Oliver teenager who died in October had the disease, but it’s not been determined of he died from it.
Meanwhile, Coldstream teenager Emily Loewen, who was diagnosed with the disease in early December, continues her recovery at home.
Free immunizations are available at health centres and select Shoppers Drug Mart and London Drugs locations. Many of these pharmacies have extended hours to accommodate immunization.
To see a full list of where to obtain the Meningococcal Quadrivalent vaccine, you can go to interiorhealth.ca.