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[Media Release -TMO] TMO and Minister of Health Encourage all to get the Flu Shot

23 August 2021



After a highly successful campaign in which over 96% of eligible people received their COVID-19 vaccinations, Te Marae Ora is asking “frontliners” to get their influenza vaccinations this week.


Flu jabs will be available this Thursday and Friday at Te Marae Ora Public Health in Tupapa, and the temporary “testing stations” at Muri and Constitution Park from 9am-2pm and at the various Te Marae Ora hospitals and clinics in the Pa Enua.


In particular border and other frontline staff like Police, airport workers (including cleaners) accommodation and hospitality workers, tourism operators, Red Cross workers and fire rescue workers are being encouraged to get the vaccination.


“As well as avoiding illness, having the vaccination should help keep people out of hospital and the health system leaving space for more urgent cases” says Secretary of Health, Bob Williams.


Government today agreed for the flu vaccination to be extended to include these key organisations AND members of the public and that there be no cost to those who choose to get their flu vaccines within the next week.


The Minister of Health – Hon Vainetutai Rose Toki Brown – is urging people to take the opportunity of getting a free flu shot, particularly as a fairly common, and highly contagious virus with cold and covid-like symptoms, has been detected in the community.


Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a common respiratory virus that causes lung and respiratory tract infections. It is highly contagious. A person infected with RSV spreads the virus in droplets when they cough, sneeze, or talk.


RSV can be harmful for children and older adults with underlying illnesses. Like the common cold it is a respiratory disease, a virus, and can’t be treated with antibiotics.


Like other cold/flu like viruses, adults who contract it need to stay home and isolate. In particular keep away from toddlers and young children. Practice good personal hygiene like handwashing and coughing/sneezing into your sleeve, and drink plenty of fluids. It can take up to ten days to recover.


ENDS: For more information, please visit www.health.gov.ck or contact Jaewynn McKay; jaewynn,mckay@cookislands.gov.ck +682 55486