The flu is a highly contagious disease and it can cause sufferers to miss a week or more of work. An infected person can spread the virus for 24 hours before they are aware they have the flu and just one sneeze can contaminate an open plan office environment or classroom.

Employers are recognizing the benefits of flu vaccination as a way to provide  a service to employees, reduce absenteeism and provide a safer working environment.

The headmistress of an inner city school noted:

 “To replace a staff member absent with the flu for 2 days will cost more than vaccinating 30 of my staff”

Influenza Vaccine Composition 2020 – Southern Hemisphere/Australia

The formulation of influenza vaccines for use in Australia is determined each year by the Australian Influenza Vaccine Committee (AIVC) based on information and recommendations from the World Health Organization (WHO). A meeting of the AIVC was held on 9th October 2019 where the expert committee reviewed and evaluated data related to epidemiology, antigenic and genetic characteristics of recent influenza isolates circulating in Australia and the Southern Hemisphere, serological responses to 2018-2019 vaccines, and the availability of candidate vaccines viruses and reagents. The committee recommended that the TGA should adopt the WHO recommendations for the 2020 flu season.

The influenza vaccine for the Australian 2020 influenza season is to contain the following virus strains:

Egg based Quadrivalent influenza:

  • an A/Brisbane/02/2018 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;
  • an A/South Australia/34/2019 (H3N2)-like virus;
  • a B/Washington/02/2019-like (B/Victoria lineage) virus; and
  • a B/Phuket/3073/2013-like (B/Yamagata lineage) virus.

Egg based Trivalent vaccines:

  • an A/Brisbane/02/2018 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;
  • an A/South Australia/34/2019 (H3N2)-like virus; and
  • a B/Washington/02/2019-like (B/Victoria lineage) virus.

References
1. WHO 2020 Southern Hemisphere recommendation

2. TGA / AIVC Recommendations

Harbour Healthcare will be using the Australian made Afluria Quadrivalent Flu Vaccine produced by Seqirus CSL and we have been advised that the vaccine will be available from mid March 2020

 

From a risk management perspective can you afford not to have your staff vaccinated ?

 

Harbour Health Care Vaccination 1To organize a flu vaccination clinic at your workplace:

  • Contact us and provide number estimates and site locations
  • Reserve suitable dates and times for your flu vaccination clinics
  • Receive promotional literature on the benefits and risks of seasonal flu
  • Use our on-line booking system
  • Receive advice on how to run a flu vaccination program effectively from our experienced team
  • All medical advice offered for any Pre and Post vaccination questions.
Harbour Health Care Vaccination 1

 

 

 

Excellent customer service:

  • Convenient online booking system with email and sms reminders.
  • Our flu program is designed to operate efficiently without compromising daily operations.
  • A nurse manager will be available to answer any questions you or your staff may have both pre and post vaccination.
  • Available promotional materials include FAQ flyers, sample e-mail messages, articles to be included in company newsletters and Government website references.
  • We have proven ability to deliver large multi-site flu vaccination programs.
  • Harbour Healthcare has a network of immunisation nurses which enables us to service most suburban and regional areas throughout Australia.
  • Harbour Healthcare uses Australian made vaccines where possible.
  • Harbour Healthcare complies with all state and federal laws for the delivery administration of mobile flu vaccination programs including cold chain management compliance.
  • Harbour Healthcare will always endeavor to stay up-to-date on flu-related information, vaccine availability and industry trends.
  • Importantly all participants receive a lollipop!

Information on our booking system

The Booking System we use is activated approximately 3 to 4 weeks prior to the vaccination day. Once activated you are sent a URL Link which you then send to your staff .Staff then click on the link, follow the prompts and select an appointment time. Your employees can only select one appointment time and they can cancel an appointment and reschedule if required.

Employees are sent an email reminder 24 hours prior to the vaccination day. Staff can download a consent form at the time of booking an appointment or when they receive their appointment reminder email

Who should get a flu shot?

Influenza vaccine is recommended for anyone who wants to reduce the likelihood of becoming ill or spreading the disease.

If you work in an environment with lots of people, have contact with the public, travel on public transport or have contact with school aged children then you are more susceptible and at greater risk of contracting flu. It is also recommended for people who travel regularly nationally or internationally.

After receiving the flu vaccination

After receiving the flu vaccine your body produces antibodies to fight off the flu virus and these antibodies continue to protect you for the year. The body is protecting itself and is not weakened by this process. It takes about 2 weeks after receiving the vaccine for complete protection to develop.

Some people may experience reactions after receiving the flu vaccine. These can include:

  • Local Reactions (the most common reaction)such as soreness, redness, swelling at injection site (This usually goes within 24 to 48 hours).
  • Systemic reactions (not common) such as fever, malaise and aching muscles – these symptoms can mimic the flu. It is important to realise that this is a reaction to the vaccine and not the flu and usually goes within 1-2 days.
  • Immediate adverse reactions such as hives, swelling and anaphylaxis (very rare).
  • Reactions to vaccines are rare and can happen when you receive any vaccine or drug. If a severe reaction were to occur it would usually happen within a few minutes that is why all people are requested to remain in the area for 15 minutes after receiving a flu vaccine.

 

Remember the flu vaccine does not contain a live virus and cannot give you the flu and vaccine protection is much safer than getting the flu.