Flu Already at Record Highs

The Flu season is peaking early this year, and already Australia has been hit harder by Flu this year than ever before. They have seen record numbers of cases in April, with 56,500 cases — 6 times the previous record high. Already 122 Australians have died, with the youngest being a 3 year old child.

The risks of flu are high. Flu is highly contagious and can have you off work for a week. Complications of the flu can include illnesses like pneumonia, sinus infection, or worsening of other illnesses like asthma or heart failure. Worsening of flu complications can lead to death.

The Influenza virus kills also more people in New Zealand than those kills on the roads, with estimates being 500 people die each year from flu. The elderly, those who are pregnant, those with chronic illness and babies and children are the most at risk.

Flu is already circulating in New Zealand however this Australian outbreak can easily spread to New Zealand considering the amount of travel between our countries — we cannot be complacent. The Immunisation Advisory Centre director Dr Nikki Turner has said “There’s only a bit of water between us and Australia, someone just needs to carry a respiratory
illness on a plane and it will spread around NZ.”

You need to have a flu vaccination every year and the protection from the flu vaccination will last for at least the flu season, and up to one year. Each year the flu virus is different so just because you had the vaccine last year doesn’t make you immune — they keep changing. The vaccines are made each year based on the most common flu circulating.

The great news is that the flu strains in this years vaccine are well matched to these outbreaks that are happening here and in Australia. With the worst of winter flu still to come it is very important that you vaccinate if you have not already.

TriEx nurses can still come to your workplace to vaccinate your team, or we have the option of vouchers for small teams or for teams spread out through the country (or a combination of both).

For more information or to book read more here.

Influenza is Risky Business

Influenza is risky for you and your business. Our 2019 flu vaccination season is beginning in late March, and our flu packs have been sent out. Our flu packs include a booking form, poster and brochure with pricing and flu facts. This year we have an online booking form for ease of booking, however we still have our traditional form available as well. If you do not receive our flu information and want to have this posted out to you, please email us here.

The Quadrivalent flu vaccine is now standard and has been updated for 2019. This vaccine offers protection against 4 strains of the flu virus including 2 new strains for this season. These strains are:

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

TriEx can also provide you with nationwide flu vaccination vouchers for ease and flexibility for those employees not available on vaccination day, for remote employees, or if you do not meet our minimum number for an on-site visit. These vouchers can be redeemed at vaccinating Unichem or Life Pharmacies throughout New Zealand.

To learn more about our flu vaccination programme, or to register your interest for 2019 visit our flu page here.

Flu Vaccinations Delayed

Flu vaccinations will start three weeks later this year after major mutations of some strains of the potentially deadly virus were discovered. Vaccinations normally start in early March, but two new strains had to be addressed, which delayed production by three weeks. Read more about this here

For information about our Flu Vaccination season, please read more here

Authorities Prepare for Flu Strain

New Zealand is preparing for a second round with a potentially deadly flu strain now sweeping North America. About 20 children have died from influenza in the United States as the H3N2 strain puts thousands of people in hospital during the northern hemisphere winter. About 7.3 per cent of all deaths in the US last week are believed to be related to influenza and pneumonia.

National Influenza Specialist Group virologist Lance Jennings, of Christchurch, said from an influenza conference in the US that there was a ”lot of concern” there about the virus, which had caused widespread infection across 47 states. However, the deadly strain hit New Zealanders last winter. ”New Zealand has been exposed to this virus already. It’s not a new virus,” he said.

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