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Flu Shot 2021

Vaccination against influenza (flu) remains important this year. Flu is a highly contagious viral infection that can cause widespread illness and deaths every year. Vaccination is our best defence against flu viruses.

Behaviours such as increased hand washing and social distancing helped to stop the spread of flu viruses in the community last year. Relaxing social distancing restrictions this year may allow flu viruses to recirculate, even if they were hardly seen in 2020.

Who should get a flu vaccine?
Vaccination experts recommend flu vaccination for all people aged 6 months and over.

Who is eligible for a free flu vaccine?
Under the National Immunisation Program, free flu vaccines are provided to the following groups who are at higher risk of complications from flu:

  • children aged 6 months to less than 5 years
  • all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 6 months and over
  • people aged 6 months and over with certain medical conditions that increase their chance of severe influenza and its complications
  • pregnant women (at any stage during pregnancy)
  • people aged 65 years and over.

When will flu vaccines be available?
Free flu vaccines under the National Immunisation Program will become available in April 2021. Vaccinating in autumn provides protection before the peak influenza season.

Free flu vaccines will be available from GPs, community health clinics, Aboriginal Medical Services and other immunisation providers in your state or territory. To locate a service in your area you can search the National Health Services Directory.

Check with your immunisation provider to find out when they will have the vaccine available and when you can book in to get the vaccine.

If you are not eligible for a free flu vaccine, you can purchase the vaccine from your GP, a pharmacy, or another immunisation provider.

Can I get a flu vaccine at the same time as a COVID-19 vaccine?
Vaccination experts recommend waiting 14 days between getting a flu vaccine and a COVID-19 vaccine. Given this, it will be important to plan both vaccinations.

It doesn’t matter in what order you get the vaccines. However:

  1. if you are in earlier phases for COVID-19 vaccination, you should get the COVID-19 vaccine as soon you can. You can then plan your flu vaccination.
  2. if you are in later phases for COVID-19 vaccination, you should get the flu vaccine as soon as you can. This will ensure you are ready to get your COVID-19 vaccine when it is available to you.

You can check what phase you are in using the COVID-19 Vaccine Eligibility Checker.

When you book in for your flu vaccination, remember to tell your vaccination provider or clinic if you have received the COVID-19 vaccine (and when you received it). This will help them to plan your appointment.

Your immunisation provider is required to report all flu vaccinations to the Register. This includes some personal information such as your name, date of birth, contact details, and your Medicare card number.

Index of general public information

Covid-19 Notices
Emergency Numbers
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Flu Shot
Local Pharmacies

General Information

Taking PBS medicines overseas

Travellers taking PBS medicines overseas should make sure the medicine is legal in the country they are travelling to by contacting the relevant embassy, high commission or consulate before leaving Australia.

If you are planning to take PBS medicines overseas for your own personal use or the use of someone travelling with you, you should:

  • contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country you are visiting to make sure the medicine is legal there
  • carry a letter from your doctor detailing what the medicine is, how much you will be taking and stating that the medicine is for your personal use
  • leave the medicine in its original packaging
  • There are restrictions on the amount of PBS medicines you can take overseas. Check with your doctor before you travel.

Customs may detain any medicine suspected of being illegally exported. It is in your best interests to have a letter from your doctor explaining what the medicine is, how much you are carrying and that it is for your personal use. If you are unable to get a letter from your doctor, the Medicine Export Declaration form may be enough to let Customs know the medicine is for your personal use. People found to be illegally exporting PBS medicines overseas may be prosecuted.

More from www.humanservices.gov.au

The information in the above were collected from the internet,
either from government websites or from reasonably reliable health information sources.
They are for general information only and should not replace the need of seeking medical care during illnesses.