With the flu season fast approaching, leading pharmacy group TerryWhite Chemmart will offer flu vaccination appointments from today to help combat flu related illness and hospitalisations.
TerryWhite Chemmart Chief Operating Officer Duncan Phillips confirmed the flu vaccine, which protects against four strains of the flu as recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), was available in TerryWhite Chemmart pharmacies and bookings were now open for flu vaccinations.
“With the influenza virus constantly changing, it’s important that Australians are not complacent and remember that an annual flu vaccination is the best protection against the flu,” he said.
TerryWhite Chemmart pharmacist Krystel Tresillian said the influenza virus was always “unpredictable”.
“After a horror 2017 season where there were 249,882* laboratory confirmed cases of influenza, the 2018 season was relatively mild by comparison with just 90,861 confirmed cases,” said TerryWhite Chemmart pharmacist Krystel Tresillian.
“However, influenza viruses are always changing which is why we are reminding Australians that an annual vaccination is vital to ensure they are protected against the most prevalent strains for that year.
“The flu is a severe illness. It's not the cold; it's not the sniffles. Even if you are healthy, the flu can leave you very unwell for a week or more, and in the worst cases can result in hospitalisation or even death.
“At TerryWhite Chemmart, you can book in for your annual flu vaccination with one of our qualified and trained pharmacists to ensure you have the best defence against the flu. We can also provide you with advice, resources and support on how to keep you and your family healthy this winter.”
Ms Tresillian said that the flu vaccination was particularly important for people at high risk of getting the flu, including younger children, pregnant women, older people and people with chronic medical conditions including asthma and heart disease.
TerryWhite Chemmart is currently taking bookings for flu vaccinations. The flu vaccination service is completed within minutes by a trained and qualified TerryWhite Chemmart pharmacist in a private consultation space, followed by a short period of observation.
Vaccination is best undertaken in the autumn months in anticipation of Australia’s peak flu season which usually occurs between June and September.
People can book an appointment online at http://www.terrywhitechemmart.com.au/flu or at their local TerryWhite Chemmart at a date and time that is suitable to them. Walk-ins and weekend appointments are also available in some pharmacies, so check with your local TerryWhite Chemmart.
Flu symptoms usually include:
- High fever – 39 degrees or more
- Severe cough
- Body aches and pain
- Extreme exhaustion
- Sore throat
- Runny nose
Other tips for keeping well this winter
- Cough or sneeze into your elbow: Hands are a major transmitter of viruses and bugs. If you don't have a tissue handy and you feel a sneeze or cough coming on, cough or sneeze into your elbow. It's a part of your body less likely to touch other surfaces and will help stop the spread of germs. If you do use a tissue, make sure you dispose of it into a bin nearby.
- Wash your hands regularly: Flu germs are carried in almost invisible little droplets from saliva, sneezes, coughs and runny noses. They can live on surfaces for hours, and spread when people touch the infected surface. Washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water at regular intervals throughout the day is a quick and easy way to help stop the spread of these germs. Alternatively choose a hand sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol and ensure you rub it all over the surface of your hands until dry.
- If you're sick, stay home: The best way to avoid spreading the flu is to stay at home while you are unwell. In particular, avoid going to work or school or visiting busy public places and vulnerable people, such as older people. Avoid contact with others as much as possible while the infection is contagious. For adults this is usually around 3–5 days from when the first symptoms appear, and up to seven days in younger children.
- Boost your immunity in the lead up to and during winter: A holistic approach to supporting a strong immune system can include a balanced diet, regular exercise as well as taking evidence-based supplements.
About TerryWhite Chemmart
TerryWhite Chemmart is one of Australia’s leading retail pharmacy networks delivering frontline healthcare. With more than 450 community pharmacies across Australia, we are committed to ensuring every Australian has easier access to pharmacists and expert health advice every day. TerryWhite Chemmart provides high-quality, accessible and cost-effective community based health care services and programs.
*Historic Influenza Statistics: https://www.immunisationcoalition.org.au/news-media/historic-influenza-statistics/