2020 Flu Vaccinations

The 2020 Flu Vaccination has now arrived and is available for existing patients.

 

Flu vaccines are now in stock for all patients aged over 6 months, including both government and private stock.

DUE TO UNPRECEDENTED DEMAND, WE CAN ONLY TAKE BOOKINGS FOR EXISTING PATIENTS.

We ask that you book your appointment online if possible so that you can see the available times and book suitable times for you and your family. A separate flu vaccine appointment needs to be booked for each family member who needs a vaccine. If you are booking your flu injection with the Doctor and not the nurse, please not that a standard consultation fee may apply.

Our nurses have set up vaccine clinics within the practice and appointments are available ALL DAY Monday to Friday.

 

SOCIAL DISTANCING

Due to the current COVID 19 pandemic we have set up an excellent screening, administration and waiting system so when you present for your flu vaccine you will easily be able to maintain social distancing recommendations. We have hand gel and hand washing facilities available.

It is going to be important to try to stop the spread of flu this winter. We ask you not to panic and ask you to be patient. We value all our patients and want to ensure that everyone is able to access supply. We do know that there will be plenty of stock available (12.5 million flu vaccines were distributed last year), so you will not miss out.

 

YOUR SAFETY IS OUR PRIORITY!

Yes, you can visit us in person at the clinic for your flu shot as we have extra precautions and screening protocols in place to help keep you protected at the clinic. Ask us for more information about this when you speak to reception staff when you are booking your vaccination. Don’t forget you can also now book a Telehealth Appointment and a GP will call you back regarding any health matter!

 

BOOK ONLINE HERE

 

GOVERNMENT-FUNDED FLU VACCINES

In 2020, government funded flu vaccines will be available for free for:

  • all children aged six months to four years (i.e. including four year olds, but not five year olds);
  • all adults aged 65 years and over;
  • all people aged from six months with medical conditions putting them at increased risk of severe flu and its complications (for example, severe asthma, lung or heart disease, low immunity or diabetes);
  • pregnant women (during any stage of pregnancy); and
    all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged from six months.

Please note that government funded flu vaccines are only available from GP clinics and other official vaccination providers (i.e. it is not always available from pharmacies).

 

PRIVATE FLU VACCINES

Private flu vaccines are now in stock

If you don’t qualify for a government funded vaccine, you can get a private flu vaccine for $17 with a valid Medicare card and your consultation will be bulk billed.

If you don’t have a Medicare card, standard consultation fees will apply.

 

FLU VACCINES: FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is the flu?

Influenza (or “the flu”) is a highly contagious viral infection that can cause severe illness and life-threatening complications, including pneumonia. The flu is spread by contact with fluids from coughs and sneezes.

The flu viruses mutate regularly, and there are many different strains – you might have heard of strains such as “swine flu” and “bird flu” that had significant outbreaks in previous years.

The most common symptoms of the flu are the sudden appearance of a high fever, a dry cough, body aches, and feeling extremely weak and tired. Other symptoms can include chills, loss of appetite, sore throat and a runny or stuffy nose. Some people (especially children) also suffer from nausea and vomiting.

How does the flu vaccine work?

Flu vaccines cause antibodies to develop in the body about two weeks after vaccination. These antibodies provide protection against infection with the viruses that are in the vaccine.
The flu vaccine protects against the influenza viruses that research indicates will be most common during the upcoming season.

Can I get the flu from the vaccine?

No. The flu vaccine is not a “live” vaccine, so you can’t get the flu from the vaccine.

It is possible to have reactions – you might feel like you have a minor cold, with symptoms such as a sore throat or runny nose for a couple of days. You might also have a sore arm for a few days.

Also, at this time of year it’s possible that you may have contracted a virus in the day or two before you get the vaccine but not yet be showing any symptoms, or you might do so in the week or so after the vaccine (noting that the vaccine takes a few weeks to work).

This means it might feel like the flu vaccine has caused your illness, but it hasn’t – you were going to feel sick whether or not you’d had the vaccine.

How much does the flu vaccine cost?

There is a charge of $17 for the flu vaccination. There is no additional charge if you are booked with the nurses. If you book your vaccination with your usual Doctor, standard consultation fees may apply.
People in eligible high risk groups are entitled to a free government funded vaccine.

When should I get my flu vaccine?

Because the flu mutates regularly, you need a flu vaccine each year to retain protection.

It’s difficult to predict when outbreaks of the flu will occur, except that they usually occur in cooler months (i.e. winter, and end of autumn and the start of spring).

Flu vaccines usually start becoming available at the start of autumn. The flu vaccine only has effectiveness for a limited time (about 3 to 4 months), so if you have it too early, its effectiveness may have worn off before the end of the flu season.

Will the flu vaccine definitely stop me from getting the flu?

Unfortunately, no. Influenza is a disease that mutates regularly, and there are many altered strains. Although you may have had a vaccination, you might not have much immunity for a newly mutated strain.

However, given flu outbreaks tend to occur in colder months, it is worth the protection of getting the vaccine at the start of the flu season.

This is important if you’re in one of the higher risk groups as discussed above that are entitled to a government funded vaccine. By getting a flu vaccine, you’ll help stop the spread of the flu and therefore provide additional protection to the more vulnerable members of the community such as kids, the elderly and those with low immunity.

Flu vaccine side effects

If you or your child have been vaccinated recently and are experiencing side effects, click on the link for more information – https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/flu-influenza-immunisation