Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Northlanders offered free flu protection

Media Release
30 May, 2014

Northlanders offered free flu protection

With the colder weather here Northlanders are being urged to call their doctor or nurse as soon as possible to book their ‘flu’ vaccination– the vaccination is free for many people.

Influenza or ‘flu’ can be a serious illness – it’s more than a “bad cold”. Anyone can catch it. Even fit and healthy people can get it and can get very sick, according to Northland Medical Officer of Health, Dr Clair Mills.

“Some people can end up in hospital and some die because the disease can make other conditions, such as breathing or heart problems, even worse,” she says.

Influenza immunisation cannot give you the ‘flu’ because it does not contain live viruses. There can be side effects, but these usually disappear within 1-2 days by themselves.

Dr Mills says the seriousness of influenza viruses shouldn’t be underestimated.

“Even a moderate dose of ‘flu’ can stop you from working, studying or enjoying other activities for a week or more. And some people feel tired for weeks afterwards.”

Influenza vaccinations are free for New Zealanders from a doctor or nurse until the end of July if you are in one of these groups:
People aged 65 and over
Anyone under 65 years of age (including children) with long-term health conditions such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, respiratory disease (including asthma), kidney disease and most cancers
All pregnant women
Children aged from six months and up to five years of age who have been hospitalised for respiratory illness or have a history of significant respiratory illness.

Vaccine is also available to other people for a small charge.

Dr Mills says that as well as getting a ‘flu’ vaccination you can protect yourself and your family/whanau from ‘flu’ if you:

• Wash and dry your hands often
• Stay away from people who are sick
• Stay away from work or school if you’re unwell
• Cover your coughs and sneezes.

“If do feel unwell you should contact Healthline for free advice or see your doctor or nurse early, especially if you have an ongoing medical condition. Don’t wait until it becomes an emergency. Emergency departments are for real emergencies,” advises Dr Mills.

For further influenza information go to www.fightflu.co.nz or www.moh.govt.nz or call 0800 IMMUNE 0800 466 863. For free health advice, call Healthline 0800 611 116.

Additional information for sidebar stories:

Influenza virus is different from a cold virus. A cold virus only affects the nose, throat and the upper chest and lasts for a few days.

Influenza SymptomsCold Symptoms

Sudden onset of illness. Moderate to severe illness lasting 7-10 days

Mild illness

Fever (usually high)

Mild fever

Headache (may be severe)

Mild headache (congested sinuses)

Dry cough may become moist

Sometimes a cough

Muscle aches

Muscle aches uncommon


A runny nose

Bed rest necessary

Can suffer severe complications (e.g. pneumonia)


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Relevant Consents Gained: Government Unveils RMA Reform Package

The government has formally hauled down the flag on its attempts to alter the balance of environmental and economic priorities in the Resource Management Act, unveiling a 180-page Resource Legislation Amendment Bill containing reforms that have been largely endorsed by most political parties. More>>


Closing Schools And Such: Interim Redcliffs Decision Announced

“While the school’s board has argued that circumstances that could give rise to potential disruption are extremely unlikely, advice from technical experts has shown these concerns cannot be ruled out." More>>


Jane Kelsey: High Court Can’t Make Groser Provide TPPA Information Faster

‘This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Groser’s stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, following a High Court order that he reconsider the Official Information Act request I made last January’, said University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, first applicant in the case. More>>

Werewolf 58: No Climate For Change

The last time the global community tried to take collective action on climate change the world’s leaders finally came to agree that every not-too-onerous effort should be made to hold global warming to 2°C above the pre-industrial average. At Paris, all 150 participant countries nations will have put forward their pledges... On the information available, New Zealand's is the second weakest contribution of any nation in the developed world. More>>


Lambton Quay Shutdown: Object Was Made To Look Like Bomb

Police cordoned off part of Lambton Quay Wednesday afternoon, saying that a suspicious package had been found. Buildings were evacuated and buses were detoured. The army’s explosive ordnance disposal unit was brought to the Quay. More>>


Public Sector Still Shrinking: Record Low Number Of 'Backroom Bureaucrats'

Ongoing restraint in the public sector and a focus on better frontline services has seen a further reduction in the number of core Government employees, State Services Minister Paula Bennett says. More>>


Disobeying The Law: Police Censorship Of Crime Research “An Outrage”

The Green Party is calling on Police Minister Michael Woodhouse to ensure Police scrap controversial contracts that place onerous restrictions on academic researchers’ access to Police data, the Green Party says. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news