Federal Government releases record number of flu vaccines

Amanda Lyons

9/05/2019 3:38:32 PM

As Australia grapples with a surge in influenza cases, Health Minister Greg Hunt hopes to encourage high vaccination rates throughout the country.

Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt.
Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt hopes to encourage a record uptake of flu vaccinations. (Image Mick Tsikas)

After a relatively mild influenza season last year, the virus is surging in 2019.
This year has already seen Australia record two-thirds the amount of lab-confirmed influenza cases as were reported for the whole of 2018, as well as a number of deaths10 in South Australia alone.
Experts have also predicted 4000 deaths from influenza in Australia this year.
In the midst of this outbreak, the Federal Government has announced record numbers of flu vaccines will be provided throughout the country this year, with 11.4 million doses already released into the market by the end of April.
‘This includes over 7.4 million doses for the National Immunisation Program [NIP] and state and territory government schemes, including 3.8 million doses of enhanced vaccines for those aged 65 years and over,’ Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said.
Minister Hunt bolstered the message that was issued this week by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA), which urged practitioners to support evidence-based public health initiatives such as vaccination.
‘Vaccination is the most effective way to protect individuals and the broader community from the flu,’ he said.
‘It’s important to get vaccinated against influenza every year, as the virus changes year to year.’
Peak influenza transmission season in most parts of Australia occurs between June and September. People who are eligible for a free flu vaccine through the NIP include:

  • people aged 65 years and older
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged six months and older
  • pregnant women
  • people with particular medical conditions that place them at risk of severe influenza who are aged six months and older.

Flu Flu vaccine influenza National Immunisation Program vaccination

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Steve Hambleton   10/05/2019 7:11:33 AM

I am totally happy to be advised by my college - I am wide eyed that AHPRA feels the need to advise practitioners. AHPRA - not even the medical board.....