Canada's top doctor warns the country could be heading for its first typical flu season since the pandemic began, even as health systems are still battling the fourth wave of COVID-19.
Last year Canada was spared the brunt of flu season thanks to strict public health measures to protect against COVID-19.
Surveillance data from the Public Health Agency of Canada shows higher rates of infection than expected for some of Canada's most common seasonal viruses, including respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV.
Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam says a heavy flu season could put extra pressure on already fragile healthcare systems.
She says this is definitely not the year to have influenza wreak havoc.
That's why public health says it will be more important than ever that people get flu shots to avoid complications like pneumonia and protect hospitals from becoming overloaded.
Laura Osman, The Canadian Press