Psst! Have you heard about the “Christmas kidney?” . . . Psst! Don’t forget a flu shot isn’t about you

If you haven’t heard Chris Rea’s Driving Home for Christmas, here it is and it’s a good one . . .

We are closing in on Christmas, so why not a story about a “Christmas kidney,” a story that really is worth a listen?

Jason Armstrong of West Vancouver and his family are more than ready for Monday. Yes, he is going to get a new kidney on Monday, two days before Christmas Day. . . . Armstrong, 48, and his wife have four children. . . . He has had health issues for seven years and really has quite a story that includes a lot more than kidney failure. . . . One potential donor who was a match found out during testing that she wouldn’t be able to give him a kidney. In the end, another acquaintance is giving him what she calls a “Christmas kidney.” . . . Armstrong equates it to winning a lottery. “She’s actually going to save my life. . . . Thank you isn’t enough,” he told Claire Allen of 980 CKNW, a Vancouver radio station. . . . This is a terrific listen. So take 10 minutes out of your life and check it out right here.

If you haven’t already, do all the people around you a favour and get yourself a flu shot for Christmas.

Here’s Dr. Richard Webby, a member of the Infectious Diseases Department at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the World Health Organization’s Vaccine Composition Team:

With family gatherings and travel during the holiday season, the influenza virus is spreading across the country and (people) need to take precautions now to protect themselves and their families.

“It is still not too late to get vaccinated and for your body to build up immunity this flu season.

“The bottom line is the flu shot is still the most valuable and life-saving public health tool in preventing and spreading the flu. In fact, this year’s flu vaccine has been reformulated and updated based on last year’s shot.”

Some tips for preventing the flu . . . Get the flu shot . . . Wash your hands regularly . . . Cover your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough . . . Stay home and rest if you are ill . . . Wash your hands . . . Wash your hands . . . Wash your hands.

If you pay attention to anything, please make it this from Dr. Webby:

“Getting the flu vaccine isn’t just about protecting your health, it’s also about protecting those around you who are vulnerable like the elderly, children, and those with serious health issues. The more people who get the flu shot, the less chance the virus can spread while protecting more people.”

There are many people walking around out there who look healthy but due to health circumstances have compromised immune systems. These are just some of the people we need to protect by getting flu shots.

Oh, and Grandma and Grandpa, too.


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