Time for flu vaccination

Precaution. Now is the time for a flu vaccination, say Tasmanian health authorities ahead of the winter flu season.

Public Health acting director Mark Veitch said there have been 87 confirmed cases of flu in Tasmania so far this year – 18 of these in May.

Many more cases are expected during winter.

“I encourage Tasmanians to get their annual flu jab very soon to protect themselves and those around them from flu this year,” Dr Veitch said.

“Half of the cases so far this year have been in people older than 60 years.

“Older Tasmanians risk more severe illness from influenza.”

The flu vaccine is free to those Tasmanians at greater risk of severe flu complications, including:

• anyone aged 65 years and over

• indigenous children aged six months to five years

• indigenous people aged 15 years and over

• pregnant women

• adults and children from six months of age with chronic medical conditions, such as heart, lung or kidney diseases, asthma, diabetes, cancers, impaired immunity and neuromuscular conditions.

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