Mackay HHS CE Jo Whitehead received her Influenza immunisation at the onsite staff Influenza clinic
Mackay HHS CE Jo Whitehead received her Influenza immunisation at the onsite staff Influenza clinic

Hospital staff roll up sleeves for flu vaccinations

STAFF across Mackay Hospital and Health Services are rolling up their sleeves and protecting patients, the community and themselves from influenza.

This year in Mackay there have been 173 reported influenza cases from January 1 to May 17.

That compares to the mean average of 186 cases annually for the same time period over the previous four years.

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Mackay Hospital and Health Service Infection Prevention and Management clinical nurse consultant Jenny Seymour said 75 per cent staff had been immunised against the disease.

“Each year, staff are offered a free influenza vaccination to help protect not only our most vulnerable patients but each other,” Ms Seymour said.

“Vaccination is the single best protection against influenza, by building immunity to the virus and helping to prevent transmission of the virus to other people.

“The timing of the vaccination aims to achieve the highest level of defence during Influenza season in Queensland, which is typically June to September, with the peak historically in August.”

Each year, a new vaccine is produced to cover strains that are predicted to be circulating in the coming Influenza season.

In 2019 a total of 522 cases were reported in Mackay compared to only 199 cases in 2018.

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