2024 Flu Vaccination Now Available For Territorians

NT Government

The 2024 influenza (flu) vaccination is now available for all Territorians over the age of six months.

Territorians can access the vaccination from their GP, health clinic (including remote health clinics) and some community pharmacies.

For the first time, those most at risk of severe influenza will be able to receive a free vaccine from participating community pharmacies as part of the National Immunisation Program (NIP).

By getting the vaccine, Territorians can protect themselves from getting sick and passing the flu to others, helping to keep the community safe.

Different viral strains of the flu occur each year. It is important to receive an annual flu vaccine to ensure the best protection against current strains.

Flu vaccination is recommended annually between April and June as the Northern Territory (NT) enters the dry season, or winter. During this period, flu case numbers are set to increase across Australia.

To date this year, there have been more than 200 flu cases confirmed, mostly in the Top End and East Arnhem regions.

Last year saw the second highest number of flu cases recorded in the NT in the past decade, second to 2022 when COVID-19 restrictions eased. In 2023, 2,869 cases of flu were recorded, compared to 4,956 in 2022; 76 in 2021; 289 in 2020 and 1,876 in 2019.

In 2023, around 73,300 Territorians received the flu vaccine. This compares to 84,000 in 2022, 65,800 in 2021 and 81,000 in 2020.

Those most at risk of severe influenza and who are eligible for a free influenza vaccine include:

· People aged 65 years and over

· Children aged six months to under five years

· Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged six months and over

· People aged six months and over with a medical condition here that increases their risk of severe influenza infection

· Pregnant women during any stage of their pregnancy

People who are not eligible to receive a free flu vaccination can purchase one from a vaccine provider, such as a GP or participating pharmacy.

Flu often has an abrupt onset and symptoms include tiredness, fever, headache, chills, sore throat, loss of appetite, cough, runny nose and sneezing.

People who are concerned about their flu symptoms should contact their pharmacy, GP or call healthdirect on 1800 022 222.

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