Immunisation is your best defence against influenza. Even fit and healthy people should consider getting the flu jab to protect themselves. – Ministry of Health website

Influenza – or the flu – is a virus that spreads quickly from person to person. Symptoms include fever, chills, aches, runny nose, a cough and stomach upset. Immunisation is your best defence against the flu.

Did you know? The Influenza vaccination is FREE for people who are most at risk. 

Eligibility criteria for FREE seasonal influenza vaccination for 2018:

  • Pregnant women (any trimester).
  • People aged 65 years and older.
  • People aged under 65 years with any of the medical conditions listed HERE
  • Children aged 4 years or under who have been hospitalised for respiratory illness or have a history of significant respiratory illness.

Also, people under 18 years of age living in the:

  • Seddon/Ward and rural Eastern Marlborough region (within the Nelson Marlborough District Health Board).
  • Kaikoura and Hurunui areas (within the Canterbury District Health Board).
  • who have been displaced from their homes in Edgecumbe and the surrounding region.

For anyone not listed here – the flu vaccination can cost upward of $25 depending on the provider, but some workplaces will provide you with immunisation as a workplace initiative.

If you choose to get immunised, you can find a registered participating provider HERE

According to the Ministry of Health there are other precautions you can take to avoid spreading the flu.

  • If you are unwell, stay at home until you are better.

Follow basic hygiene practices:

  • Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds and dry them for 20 seconds – or use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Don’t share drinks.
  • Avoid crowded places.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze – then put the tissue in a lined bin.

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