News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


Plunket encourages Kiwis to take advantage of free vaccine

Plunket encourages Kiwis to stay healthy with free winter flu vaccine


New Zealand’s largest provider of services to support the well-being of children under five is encouraging New Zealanders at greatest risk of catching influenza to get immunized this winter, and protect themselves from the illness for free.

The government yesterday announced the free winter flu vaccine programme will be extended to the end of August as winter flu cases are rising and have yet to peak.

The vaccination is free to those at greatest risk of serious influenza complications, including those over the age of 65, pregnant women, people with on-going health conditions such as asthma, and children under five years who have been hospitalized for a respiratory illness.

“This is a chance for New Zealanders who have yet to be immunized to protect themselves from a serious illness”, says Plunket clinical advisor Allison Jamieson. “Influenza kills around 400 New Zealanders, directly or indirectly, each year – so it’s not something we should take lightly”.

“We strongly advise expectant mums to get the free vaccination. Babies under 6 months old are too young to be immunised so if their mums are vaccinated they can pass protection on to their baby.

“A lot of changes occur in a woman’s body during pregnancy. Changes to lung function, changes to immunity and increased heart output and oxygen consumption place pregnant woman at particularly high risk of severe complications. Pregnant women with other medical conditions are at even greater risk of severe influenza-related illness”.

The government is reporting that A-H1N1 appears to be the most common strain of influenza which affects adults and young children more severely than other strains. The winter flu vaccine covers the A-H1N1 strain.

The vaccine was due to be funded until 31 July and is now available until the end of August.

People who are not eligible for the free vaccine can purchase it from their general practitioner or selected pharmacies.

For more information visit www.fightflu.co.nz or www.health.govt.nz or call 0800 IMMUNE 0800 466 863.

– ENDS –

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

TV3 Video: NZ Praised For Sportsmanship After Cricket World Cup Final Loss

New Zealand may have been outplayed in the Cricket World Cup final by Australia, but received praise worldwide for their graciousness in defeat. More>>

ALSO:

Earlier:

Werewolf: Finding Love In Hell

Will it really be 25 years in May since David Lynch’s Wild at Heart won big at Cannes, nabbing no less than the Palme d’Or? Amazing but true, and yet the film that was briefly Lynch’s most feted, now seems to be his most forgotten. More>>

ALSO:

Cricket: Dramatic Win Puts Black Caps In Finals

In Parliament: When Parliament resumed at 2pm the House passed a motion on a voice vote admiring the performance of the New Zealand cricket team in last night’s World Cup semi-final and wishing them well for the final on the weekend. More>>

ALSO:

Moon Shot/Kills Switch: The X Factor Judges Removed

MediaWorks has today decided that Natalia Kills and Willie Moon are no longer suitable to judge The X Factor and have removed them from the show. MediaWorks CEO, Mark Weldon, said that last night on The X Factor both Kills and Moon made comments that were completely unacceptable. More>>

ALSO:

Tessa Nichol: Up Up & Away In The Wairarapa

It’s an overcast morning in the Wairarapa but the mood on the ground in Carterton’s Carrington Park is anything but grey. More than 20 hot air balloons are getting ready to take off into the cloudy sky to mark the start of this year’s Wairarapa Balloon Festival. More>>

Golden Shears: Scotsman Wins Golden Shears Open Final

A Scottish shearer who settled in New Zealand to farm in Taranaki has become the first shearer from overseas to win the Golden Shears Open Shearing Championship. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news