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22 March 2002 News Update


The Ministry of Health is advising people to get their flu vaccinations early this season to avoid having a miserable winter.

Ministry spokesperson, Dr Lance Jennings, says now is the time for people to take advantage of the free flu vaccination being offered again this year.

During the 2001 season, 48,000 New Zealanders had influenza with 379 people admitted to hospital with complications.

"It is clear not enough people realise the benefits of this vaccination. Catching influenza can lead to severe complications and vaccination is the only way to prevent these," he says.

The ministry will fund vaccinations for people aged 65 years and over, as well people with certain chronic medical conditions until the end of June.

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