Canada is currently dealing with a flu epidemic, with at least 54 deaths and 15,500 documented cases this season. 

The elevated rates of infection this year are due to the concerted effort of two mutated strains - H3N2 and B/Yagamata. Both are highly resistant to the flu vaccine and are causing potentially life-threatening conditions in some cases.

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While most flu-related infections aren’t serious and can be treated with just rest, some individuals may be at greater risk of complications. These include children, seniors, or anyone who has heart, lung or immune system issues. Under certain circumstances, a person may be prescribed a drug to help the virus pass quicker.

Tamiflu is an antiviral medication that works to block the effects of the flu. It works by inhibiting an enzyme called neuraminidase, which the virus uses to spread throughout the body. The medication can shorten the infection period and offer rapid relief for individuals, so long as they take it within the first two days.

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That’s why it’s so important for people to go to the doctor as soon as they exhibit flu symptoms, especially if they seem worse than normal. If you have a fever, chills, cough, sore throat, runny nose, muscle pains, headaches and sinus issues, you should see your doctor right away as you might be eligible to receive Tamiflu.

Currently, Tamiflu is in low stock at Ontario pharmacies but the province assures that wholesalers have lots. The drug has seen an increase in popularity this season and has helped several people recover faster from the illness. It costs around $60 before insurance and requires a prescription.