More Victorians now have greater access to influenza vaccines thanks to additional supplies.

The Commonwealth Government has organised distribution of around 120,000 additional doses of influenza vaccine to be used in all adults 18 years and above.

For children six months to under five years eligible under the Victorian funded program, more than 70,000 doses of vaccine are now available to GPs and immunisation providers.

Vaccination is still highly recommended for all Victorians, especially those in the at-risk groups, as the vaccine offers protection for the rest of the winter.

‘Any at-risk groups in the community who are eligible for free vaccine under the National Immunisation Program or the Victorian under-five program who have not had their shot so far this year can now obtain it from their GP or vaccination provider,’ Chief Health Officer, Professor Charles Guest said.

‘Flu vaccinations save lives. We know influenza is a highly contagious viral infection, spread by contact with fluids from coughs and sneezes, that’s why we’ve obtained more vaccine to protect more Victorians.’

The at-risk groups who should consider immunisation include children aged six months to five years, and people in at-risk groups under the National Immunisation Program. 

The National Immunisation Program risk groups include pregnant women, people aged 65 years and over, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 15 years and over, and people with medical conditions predisposing them to severe influenza.

In total, Victoria has distributed 1,731,184 influenza vaccines. This is 448,000 more doses than 2017, when 1,283,580 vaccines were distributed.

For more information on the seasonal influenza vaccine stocks, visit the seasonal flu vaccine page on health.vic.

For more information on influenza, visit the influenza disease information advice page on health.vic.