Influenza sentinel recruitment

FluWatch Sentinel Influenza-Like-illness (ILI) Surveillance System

The sentinel influenza-like-illness (ILI) surveillance system is FluWatch’s primary source for outpatient influenza surveillance data in Canada. It was developed to assist local and national health authorities to monitor the impact of influenza. To become a FluWatch sentinel, please contact us at

Who can become a FluWatch sentinel practitioner?

Physicians, nurse practitioners and registered nurses who are involved in primary care are welcome to become FluWatch sentinel practitioners.

Sentinel physicians and nurses are needed in all areas across the country. The more sentinels send data on ILI in their practice, the better FluWatch can analyse ILI consultation rates in each region and for Canada as a whole.

British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan coordinate their own sentinel practitioner networks (see below). FluWatch collaborates with these provincial programs and coordinates ILI surveillance in other provinces and territories.

If you are not a health-care professional, the FluWatchers system is a new online health surveillance system for Canadians who want to contribute to ILI surveillance.

What are the benefits for FluWatch sentinels?

Sentinel practitioners provide important information on the presence, demographic and geographic distribution of influenza and influenza-like-illness (ILI) activity across Canada.

Physicians can claim Mainpro-M2 credits for continuing education through the College of Family Physicians of Canada.

All sentinels receive a weekly summary of ILI consultation rates in their province.

How are data reported?

Each week, for one day of practice, sentinels report the total number of patient visits and the number of ILI cases seen by age group (0-5, 5-19, 20-64 and 65+ years).

Sentinels receive a personalized link by e-mail to report their data using our secure online platform. The time commitment is small, approximately 15 minutes per week.

How are data used?

National trends in ILI visits are included in the weekly FluWatch report as an important measure of how Canadians are affected by seasonal influenza.

National data are shared with the World Health Organization to contribute to understanding the global circulation of influenza.

Aggregate data are shared with provincial/territorial public health departments on a weekly basis to help them assess intensity of influenza circulation in their region.

Provincial sentinel practitioner programs

If you are interested in becoming a sentinel practitioner, please contact the sentinel recruiter listed for your region.

Sentinel practitioner recruiters Contact
Province: Saskatchewan
Saskatchewan Influenza Sentinel Program Linda M Mushanski
Saskatchewan Disease Control Laboratory
Phone: 306 787-3138
Fax: 306 787-1525
Province: Alberta
The Alberta Recording and Research Network (TARRANT) TARRANT Viral Watch Team
Phones: 403-220-2750/403-210-7806/403-210 9261
Fax: 403-210-9883
Secure fax: 403-210-9337
Province: British Columbia
BC Sentinel Physician Influenza Surveillance Program Lisan Kwindt
BC Centre for Disease Control
Phone: 1-888-881-8886
Fax: 604-707-2516
BCCDC Influenza Surveillance Reports
All other Provinces and Territories
FluWatch surveillance program FluWatch surveillance program
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