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 Influenza is a potentially serious viral infection that’s much worse than a cold.  Influenza comes on suddenly with a fever or chills, sore throat, dry cough, headaches, fatigue, body aches and pains.

What to look for

Influenza is easily spread and anyone can catch it.  It is passed on by droplets when people cough and sneeze and touch infected surfaces.

Health risks

Influenza can affect anyone, causing symptoms such as fever, cough, sore throat, muscle aches and pains - and sometimes also vomiting. Most people recover uneventfully after an unpleasant week or so, but a few will develop complications such as pneumonia. 

What can you do?

  • Get the influenza vaccination from your nurse or doctor, even if you are fit and healthy

  • Cover your cough when coughing or sneezing and then wash your hands

  • Always use disposable tissues and stay at home when you are sick

  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and hot water and dry your hands with a clean dry towel or paper towel

Free immunisation is available from 18 March 2020 for those most at risk of influenza complications.

Pregnant women (any trimester)

• People aged 65 years and older

• People aged under 65 years with certain 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

Like many employers, the Bay of Plenty and Lakes District Health Boards offer free immunisation for all of their health workers.

Or for more information contact your doctor or practice nurse, visit the IMAC website or phone 0800 IMMUNE (0800 466 863).



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