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ProCare Welcomes Extended Funding For Flu Vaccine Ahead Of 2023 ‘flu Season’

With ‘flu season’ fast approaching for 2023, ProCare welcomes the announcement from Pharmac to extend funding for a second consecutive flu season to include tamariki aged 6 months to 12 years and Māori and Pacific people aged 55-64 years old.

Bindi Norwell, Chief Executive at ProCare says: “It’s been a tough start to the year for many with the floods, cyclone Gabrielle and the uplift in covid cases. Preventing whānau from getting sick with the flu will help ensure children can attend as many school days as possible throughout winter, will help keep parents at work and ultimately take away some of the stress of juggling sick family members during the winter period.

“A simple flu vaccine can give you some peace of mind going into winter that you are protected and will also help to ease some of the pressures on an already stretched health sector so we can continue to deliver care for those who need it,” continues Norwell.

Dr Allan Moffitt, Clinical Director at ProCare, says: “Influenza can spread quickly and easily through children, particularly when they’re in classrooms with closed doors in the cooler weather. Offering free flu vaccines for tamariki not only protects them, but also protects their wider whānau against what can be a serious illness.

“Funding these priority populations to receive a free flu vaccine means that approximately 835,000 children, including 370,000 who are of Māori or Pacific ethnicity, will benefit from this,” he continues.

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“General practices across Aotearoa have been preparing for the flu season for some weeks now and will be able to start vaccinating patients from 1 April. We really encourage our communities to protect themselves and their whānau against the flu, particularly those with diabetes, asthma, other respiratory issues such as COPD, cardiovascular issues or if they are currently pregnant,” concludes Dr Moffitt.

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