The Free 2018 Seasonal Flu Vaccine Is Now Available at Our Medical Practice.
Getting an annual flu vaccine is the first and best way to protect yourself and your family from the flu. Flu vaccination can reduce flu illnesses, doctors’ visits, and missed work and school due to flu, as well as prevent flu-related hospitalizations. The best time to be vaccinated is as early as possible when the flu vaccine is available to ensure maximum protection. The protection develops two weeks after getting the injection and lasts up to a year. The more people who get vaccinated, the more people will be protected from flu, including older people, very young children, pregnant women and people with certain health conditions who are more vulnerable to serious flu complications.
It is estimated that each year, flu contributes to an average of 13,500 hospitalisations and more than 3,000 deaths among Australians aged over 50 years.
Free seasonal influenza vaccine is funded for the following groups at higher risk of complications from influenza:
- All children aged 6 months to less than 5 years of age
- All individuals aged 5 years and over with medical risk conditions, namely:
- Cardiac disease, including cyanotic congenital heart disease, coronary artery disease and congestive heart failure
- Chronic respiratory conditions, including suppurative lung disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and severe asthma
- Other chronic illnesses requiring regular medical follow up or hospitalisation in the previous year, including diabetes mellitus, chronic metabolic diseases, chronic renal failure, and haemoglobinopathies
- Chronic neurological conditions that impact on respiratory function, including multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries, and seizure disorders
- Impaired immunity, including HIV, malignancy and chronic steroid use
- Children aged 6 months to 10 years on long term aspirin therapy.all people aged 65 years and over
- All Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 15 years and over
- Pregnant women (influenza vaccine can be given at any stage of pregnancy)
- People aged 65 years and over (vaccine that is specifically designed to produce a higher immunise response is available for this group)
How often do I need to be vaccinated?
It is recommended that you be vaccinated against flu every year, as the different strains of flu virus can change from year to year. This protects you against the most recent flu virus strains that maybe around.
Even if the main flu strains do not change, yearly vaccination is still recommended as immunity from flu vaccination is not long lasting.
Is the flu vaccine safe if I’m pregnant?
The flu vaccine is recommended in all stages of pregnancy and has been given safely to millions of pregnant women across the world. Studies looking at the effects of pregnant women receiving the seasonal flu vaccination indicate no negative effects on pregnant women or their babies.
For more information about the NSW flu immunisation program go to:
All children aged 6 months to less than 5 years of age are now eligible for the free flu vaccine in NSW, for more information go to: