​Flu immunisation service for vulnerable communities in Whitehorse

​Flu immunisation service for vulnerable communities in Whitehorse

23 April, 2018

Hundreds of people are planned to be immunised against the flu in Whitehorse as part of an initiative funded by Eastern Melbourne PHN (EMPHN) and delivered by LINK Health and Community to help protect our most vulnerable from influenza, which effected 36,118 Victorians in 2017.

The mobile immunisation service will visit communities vulnerable to influenza that may otherwise not become vaccinated against the virus due to access or cost, such as people who are pregnant, older, homeless, experience mental health issues, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, refugees and asylum seekers, children and carers.

The Federal Member for Deakin, Michael Sukkar MP, said in Whitehorse alone there were 133 episodes of influenza hospital admissions in 2015-16 and many more people were adversely effected.

“Influenza is a highly contagious disease that can be fatal to people in high risk groups,” he said.

“Providing easy access to the influenza vaccine at no cost aims to reduce the risk of people experiencing potential complications and keep our community out of hospital this flu season.”

LINK Health and Community CEO, Philip Moran, said providing this potentially lifesaving service to the people of Whitehorse through our partners at Carrington Health is a great gift to the community.

“Services will commence from 16 April and further information can be provided by contacting us on our dedicated phone line 1800 FLU VAX or 1800 358 829,” he said.

The service is based on an initiative EMPHN implemented in 2017 that saw almost more than 500 people from vulnerable communities in the City of Whittlesea immunised alongside an immunisation education program reaching 1200 people.

EMPHN’s $348,000 investment will see the initiative rolled-out in the local government areas of Boroondara, Knox, Manningham, Maroondah, Monash, Whitehorse, Whittlesea and Yarra Ranges within the EMPHN catchment.

The initiative is supported by funding from the Australian Government under the PHN program.

Photo opportunity: For a photo of the mobile immunisation occurring, contact Claire James, EMPHN Marketing and Communications Manager, claire.james@emphn.org.au 0425 887 397.

Eastern Melbourne PHN is a Primary Health Network funded by the Australian Government to improve the care and support people receive from health services. We aim to improve the health of our community by ensuring people receive the right care, in the right place, at the right time. www.emphn.org.au