As people in New Zealand emerge from their bubbles, there’s a much bigger chance of catching the flu. With international borders now opening, we’ll see new strains of flu spreading in our communities. Getting a flu jab is your best defence, it helps reduce your risk of getting really sick or having to go to hospital.
The flu virus affects your whole body. Symptoms come on suddenly and can include fever, chills, muscle aches, runny nose, cough, shortness of breath, and stomach upsets. It can keep you in bed for a week or more.
It can give you pneumonia. And in severe cases means a hospital stay – particularly if you’re older, a young child, pregnant, or have an ongoing medical condition, such as heart disease or diabetes. Sometimes the flu can be fatal – around 500 people die from the flu every year, with hundreds more hospitalised.
Flu jabs are safe to give at the same time as other immunisations.