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District encourages community to get flu shot

In the week to 1 July, there were 155 flu reports district-wide and 38 emergency departments reporting flu-like illness. The latest data show a notable increase of 45% and 19% respectively compared to the previous week.

WNSWLHD Acting Immunization and Communicable Diseases Manager Belinda Tracy said vaccination is especially important for children, teens and people at high risk of severe illness from the flu.

“Rising flu rates and emergency room visits are something we should always be vigilant about, especially in the winter when people are already prone to illness,” Tracy said.

“The easiest and best way to stay healthy during the winter is to get the flu vaccine. Vaccination also reduces the risk of hospitalization, which in turn helps protect health services and workers.

“This is especially important for children under the age of 16 and those who are at higher risk of severe illness from the flu. Children under the age of 16 and those over the age of 65 accounted for.

“For parents of children and teens, there is no better time to book an appointment for a flu vaccine than during school holidays and before they return to school. It’s also important to remember that you are eligible for vaccination.”

People who are considered to be at high risk of severe illness from the flu are eligible for the free flu vaccine if:

  • Children from 6 months to under 5 years old
  • over 65 years old
  • Aboriginal people from 6 months old
  • pregnant woman
  • People with serious health conditions such as diabetes, cancer, immune disorders, obesity, severe asthma, kidney, heart, lung or liver disease.

We can all take the following steps to protect ourselves and our loved ones from COVID-19 and the flu:

  • Stay up-to-date on recommended flu and COVID-19 vaccinations
  • Stay home if you have cold or flu symptoms
  • wash or sanitize hands frequently
  • Wear a mask in crowded places indoors
  • Gather outdoors or in a large, well-ventilated area with open doors and windows
  • If you’re at high risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19 or the flu, talk to your doctor now to find out what tests you might get and whether you’re eligible for antiviral medication. Develop a plan for what to do if
  • If you have cold or flu symptoms, or test positive for COVID-19 or flu, do not visit anyone at high risk of becoming seriously ill.
  • Get a rapid antigen test to test for COVID-19 before visiting a particularly vulnerable loved one.

For more information on influenza, Government of New South Wales – Influenza (Influenza).

https://www.nsw.gov.au/health/wnswlhd/news/latest-news/district-urging-communities-to-get-vaccinated-against-flu District encourages community to get flu shot

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