More flu vaccines distributed across NZ

File image/SunLive.

More than 1.26 million doses of the influenza vaccinations has already been distributed, with the announcement on earlier this month that more doses have arrived in New Zealand.

An additional 55,000 doses of the influenza vaccine FluQuadri, are in the country and providers started receiving delivery of the vaccine on Friday July 12.

It was announced at the start of June that there would be a restricted access for the flu vaccine in New Zealand.

Pharmac said at the time there was no way of buying more doses of flu vaccine for this winter, because supplies are simply not available.

FluQuadri was approved for use in patients aged three years and older by Medsafe on July 3. It has previously been used in New Zealand but this year had not completed the approval process until now. This has enabled it to be imported into New Zealand in response to higher than expected demand.

ESR has a multi-disciplinary team of scientists that work together to monitor flu trends, advise the health sector, and address critical questions regarding the epidemiology, costs, virology, and immunology of influenza and other respiratory viruses.

According to the ESR website, the Bay of Plenty region had 77.04 influenza-like illness visits to general practices were made per 100,000 registered patients followed during the week ending July 14 2019.

The region also had 51.36 influenza-positive illness visits to general practices were made per 100,000 registered patients followed during the week ending July 14 2019.

Medical officer of health Dr Neil De Wet says if you or your family members are unwell make sure you don’t spread your germs around.

“Stay at home, and away from work or school until you are feeling better. Practice good cough and sneeze etiquette. This means covering your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or cough/sneeze into your elbow.

“Hand hygiene is one of the most effective and inexpensive ways of reducing the spread of colds, influenza and other winter illnesses. Wash hands thoroughly with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds, and dry hands with a clean, dry towel or paper towel for 20 seconds.

“Immunisation is the best protection from influenza, and the best way to prevent its spread. The flu vaccine is still available and free for those with higher risk of serious illness, so call your GP or health centre to arrange an immunisation appointment,” says Neil.

Remember health advice is just a phone call away – phone Healthline on 0800 611 116.

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