April usually marks the start of the influenza season. Influenza, commonly called the flu, can be a serious illness that is sometimes fatal.
Around one in four New Zealanders are infected with flu each year. Many people won’t feel sick at all but can still pass it on to others.
Wellplace also has Fight the Flu resources, including an image you can use for electronic communications, a downloadable poster, and two flu prevention articles you can use in your workplace communications - one for workplaces with outdoor workers, and another for indoor workers.
NZ Immunisation Week
NZ Immunisation Week runs from April 30 to May 6, 2018. This year the focus is on encouraging immunisation across the lifespan, including pregnant women and people aged over 65.
For older people
If you have older people in your workforce, remind them it’s now free for people over 65 to have the shingles vaccine. Shingles is a common condition that affects a third of us over our lifetime. It‘s a long-term effect of chickenpox and is more common in older people. It can cause a painful rash and nerve pain long after the rash disappears.
Older people can also be protected against the ‘flu, tetanus and diphtheria – these vaccines are available free from general practices. Download and share this pamphlet and encourage older workers to get immunised.
Protecting babies starts during pregnancy. Pregnant women who immunise themselves against whooping cough and the ‘flu can help protect their baby by passing their immunity onto their child, who benefit when they are first born and most vulnerable. These vaccines are free and proven to be safe.
If you have pregnant women in your workforce, encourage them to be immunised against whopping cough and influenza before the winter peak. Download and share this pamphlet about immunising during pregnancy.
World Immunization Week
Also, the World Health Organization's World Immunization Week (24-30 April, 2018) is a good time to remind everyone of the importance of immunisations, and how many lives they have saved over the years.
Progress towards global vaccination targets is far off-track with 1 in 5 children still missing out on routine life-saving immunisations that could avert 1.5 million deaths each year from preventable diseases.
General immunisation information can be found on the Health Promotion Agency's immunisation page, including messages promoting on-time immunisation for babies and young children.
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