Due to a surge in influenza A cases across Australia, the Western Australian government has announced that people aged six months and older will be able to receive free flu vaccinations from now (May 30, 2022) until June 30, 2022.

While COVID-19 safety measures resulted in influenza cases dropping to almost nil in 2020 and 2021, 2022 has already seen a spike in cases, including more than 4,000 confirmed cases in Queensland, due to low vaccination and herd immunity rates.

The free flu vaccine will be available from any state-run COVID-19 vaccination clinic and participating pharmacies and GPs. All Western Australians eligible for the jab should consult with their local GP or pharmacy to see which vaccine is available to them and the most suitable.

As per the National Immunisation Program, if you live in Western Australia and you belong in any of the following categories then you're also eligible for the free flu vaccination:

6 months and over with certain medical risk factors

This includes anyone aged 6 months and over who has:

  • heart disease

  • severe asthma (requiring frequent medical consultations or use of multiple medications)

  • chronic lung conditions

  • diseases of the nervous system which affect your breathing

  • impaired immunity

  • diabetes

  • kidney disease

  • haemoglobinopathies

  • children aged six months to 10 years on long-term aspirin therapy

All children 6 months to less than 5 years

None

All Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people 6 months and over

None

65 years and over

None

Pregnant women

Any trimester during each pregnancy

For those worried about mixing COVID-19 and flu vaccines together, the Australian Department of Health states that it is perfectly safe to have both vaccines administered at around the same time as studies show that it is fine and produces a good immune response. Consult with your health practitioner beforehand as there are different types of vaccines available to determine which one is most suitable for you or if you have any questions.

For pregnant woman, the influenza can be given at the same time as the whooping cough vaccine in the second or third trimester (recommended between 20 - 32 weeks).

If you're not sure whether you should get the flu jab, seek medical advice from your doctor. Sonder is also available if you need someone to talk to about the flu jab and our support team can help direct you towards the help you need.

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If you have any questions or need extra support, we're here to help you anytime in any language. Simply start a chat with us via the home screen of the Sonder app.

Information sourced from: Western Australian State Government.

Image credit: Gustavo Fring at Pexels

All content is created and published for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health professional.

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