Health Minister Dr. Christopher Tufton announced on Wednesday that 18,000 doses of flu vaccines will be made available to the public by the end of this week.
This proactive step aims to combat the impending flu season, which typically begins in October.
Dr. Tufton emphasised the importance of taking the flu seriously, highlighting its potential to lead to severe complications such as pneumonia, blood infections, diarrhoea, and seizures in children.
The procurement of these vaccines has been made possible through the Pan-American Health Organization’s Revolving Fund for Vaccines, ensuring a steady supply for those in need.
Traditionally, the flu vaccine has been administered free of charge within the public health system to high-priority groups, including health workers, children, elderly individuals with chronic illnesses, pregnant women, those in institutionalized or state care, and non-health frontline workers.
However, Dr. Tufton revealed a shift in the government’s policy, now extending free access to the vaccine to “anyone who wants it, subject to availability” after addressing the priority groups.
Individuals interested in receiving the flu vaccine are encouraged to visit a public health facility and make a request.
This expanded access policy aims to increase vaccination rates, promoting public health and reducing the risk of flu-related complications within the community.
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