Five key messages for 2019

  1. Immunisation is the best protection against influenza. Even if you still catch influenza after immunisation, your symptoms are less likely to be severe.
  2. Get immunised to stop the spread of influenza around your community. Even if you don't feel sick, you could still be infected with influenza and pass it on to others.
  3. Influenza immunisation is recommended and FREE for people who are most likely to get very sick, be hospitalised or even die if they catch influenza: pregnant women; people aged 65 years or older; people aged under 65 years with diabetes, most heart or lung conditions and some other illnesses; and children aged 4 years or under who have had a stay in hospital for asthma or other breathing problems.
  4. Having an influenza vaccination every year can keep older people healthy and active for longer.
  5. Influenza immunisation during pregnancy helps protect the woman and her baby against influenza.

Vaccine

The influenza vaccine for the New Zealand 2019 influenza season contains the following four virus strains:

  • A/Michigan/45/2015 (H1N1) pdm09-like virus 
  • A/Switzerland/8060/2017 (H3N2)-like virus*
  • B/Colorado/06/2017-like virus* 
  • B/Phuket/3073/2013-like virus

*two new strains

Four reasons why healthcare workers should be vaccinated:

  1. Protect patients at greater risk of developing complications.
  2. Improved patient safety, improved employee safety and decreased healthcare expenditure.
  3. Healthcare workers have a duty of care to protect vulnerable patients from the serious threat of influenza illness.
  4. Relying on patients being vaccinated for their personal protection is not enough, many vulnerable people have a poor immune response to the vaccine or may not have been vaccinated this year.

Resources for General Practice

The following can be ordered from https://www.influenza.org.nz/resources 

             Top five ways to stay healthy

 

Links

Last updated 1 April 2019.