Preliminary data suggest that the pandemic influenza vaccine is safe, the Therapeutic Goods Administration reports this week, with the rate of adverse reactions being in line with previous flu vaccines. This is good news for the target groups.
The swine flu vaccination program aims to protect those who are most at risk of exposure to the H1N1 Influenza 09 (swine flu) virus. This includes health care workers and people who are more vulnerable to severe health complications from swine flu. This is why the most vulnerable people in our community are encouraged to get the swine flu vaccine first. These include:
* Pregnant women
* People with chronic health conditions such as asthma, heart and lung disease, cancer, diabetes, kidney disease, neurological disease and people with suppressed immune systems
* People with moderate to severe obesity (BMI of 35+)
* Health care workers
* Indigenous people
* Parents and guardians of infants under six months old.
The vaccine is also available for anyone else who wishes to protect themselves from swine flu, including healthy people. Contact your doctor or immunisation provider to make an appointment. The vaccine is free of charge, although your provider may charge you a service fee.