2016 Flu Season
Following a record number of flu cases in 2015, the Federal Government has introduced a four strain (quadrivalent) influenza vaccine to the National Immunisation Program (NIP).
What is Quadrivalent flu vaccine?
The quadrivalent vaccine is designed to protect against four different influenza viruses; two influenza A viruses and two influenza B viruses.
Why a change to a Quadrivalent Flu vaccine?
In previous flu seasons the influenza vaccine used was designed to protect against three different influenza viruses (Trivalent). The influenza vaccine contained two influenza A viruses and one influenza B virus.
Experts had to choose one influenza B virus. The inclusion of both influenza B viruses to the influenza vaccine aims to give broader protection.
Is the Quadrivalent Flu Vaccine safe?
Yes. The Quadrivalent vaccine cannot cause influenza illness, because the vaccine viruses used to make it are ‘inactivated’ (killed) or attenuated (weakened).
The Quadrivalent influenza Vaccine has been made using the same processes as previous three strain influenza vaccines. The only difference is the inclusion of the additional influenza B Virus.
Who is eligible for the free, government-supplied, seasonal influenza vaccine under the National Immunisation Programme?
The flu vaccine is recommended for everyone from six months of age, but is available free under the National Immunisation Program for people who face a high risk from influenza and its complications. These are:
- People aged 65 years and over;
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait people aged six months to less than five years;
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are aged 15 years and over;
- Pregnant women and;
- People aged six months and over with medical conditions such as severe asthma, lung or heart disease, low immunity or diabetes that can lead to complications from influenza.
What vaccine will Kedron Wavell Medical Centre being providing patients this flu season?
Kedron Wavell Medical Centre will be providing the quadrivalent influenza vaccine only for the 2016 flu season.
The Flu Vaccine is free if you are eligible under the National Immunisation Programme. The out of pocket cost to receive the Influenza vaccine is $19.95. For All patients the consultation will be Bulked Billed as long as this is the only medical matter discussed. We are also offering a Discount to families with 4 or more members.
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