South Australians now have another month to get their free flu vaccination, with the Government today announcing an extension to the program.
The extension – which will go until the end of July – is in response to this winter’s unique dual challenge of COVID-19 and influenza at the same time, which has placed further pressure on a hospital system already facing significant demand.
Premier Peter Malinauskas said “This is the first year South Australia’s health system has faced the challenge of a crossover of a COVID and flu season.
“This extension will take us through school holidays and beyond, providing parents more time to get their kids protected.”
Around 798,000 flu vaccines have been administered in South Australia so far this year, compared with 701,000 at the same time last year – and 787,000 doses in total for 2021.
The Malinauskas Government is urging South Australians to take this extended opportunity to head to their GP or pharmacy, get vaccinated and protect themselves against influenza this winter.
Latest figures show more than 222,000 people have received a vaccination since the beginning of the free flu vaccination campaign – launched for the first time in the state’s history on 29 May – with a total of 45 per cent of eligible South Australians now protected.
The free flu vaccination program is in addition to a suite of immediate measures put in place to ease the demand on the hospital system this winter, including:
- Opening 182 additional beds across the hospital system.
- Securing 28 additional private hospital beds to address winter demand.
- The “EDs are for Emergencies” campaign.
- Working to increase the capacity and hours of the GP Respiratory Clinics.
- A new Acute Assessment Centre at the RAH.
- Long COVID-19 clinics at RAH, TQEH and FMC.
You can receive your free flu shot at pharmacies and GPs around the state. For more information visit the SA Health website.