NEW SHINGLES VACCINE COMES WITH A COST
While the flu is a seasonal ailment, shingles can strike an adult at any time, with serious repercussions. Shingles is a virus that causes painful, blistering rashes, among other debilitating symptoms and if you’re one of the 90 per cent of Canadians who have had chickenpox, you are at risk. An estimated 130,000 Canadians develop shingles every year, the effects of which are especially devastating on seniors. “When we look at the impact on people’s lives, shingles can be so devastating,” Wanda Morris, vicepresident of advocacy at CARP, recently told CBC.ca. “This is something we really need government to look at.” While it is not yet covered provincially, it costs about $250. Since many seniors can’t afford that price tag, CARP is calling on governments to cover a new shingles vaccine. “Older Canadians should have the protection they deserve under our health-care system,” says Laura Tamblyn Watts, CARP’s national director of law, policy and research.