Health

Australia could be in for a “rebound flu season”

Back in March, we had discussed the possible prevalence of influenza this year. As we inch closer to the flu season, experts are speaking out about the possibility of a “rebound”.

TerryWhite Chemmart Chief Pharmacist Brenton Hart recently discussed flu vaccine complacency in an interview. He mentioned that research suggests up to 37% of Australians aged between 18 and 49 are not planning on receiving the influenza vaccine this year. 

Professor Terry Nolan, head of vaccine and immunisation research at the University of Melbourne, said low influenza cases last year may have affected herd immunity.

He said, “It would be fair to expect more influenza cases this year.

“In fact, we have seen something of a yoyo-effect in influenza cases in Australia in recent years; there are relatively low rates one year (such as 2016 and 2018) followed by high rates the next (2017 and 2019). It’s logical that with fewer people infected last year, there is less herd protection going forward. It’s possible that the recent pattern could continue, and we may see a rebound flu season in 2021.”

“The simple message is that unless you are booked in to receive a COVID-19 vaccine in the next 14 days, you can see a doctor or pharmacist for influenza vaccination,” he said.

“We cannot forget that influenza infection can be life-threatening. No matter your age or health status, steering clear of influenza is a top priority at this time of year. It’s important that Australians take advantage of the available protections in the coming weeks and get vaccinated to help protect themselves and those around them.”

Information source: 

  1. miragenews.com
  2. news.com.au

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

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