Flu outbreak hits hard

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There has been a total of 193,673 laboratory confirmed notifications of Influenza in Australia for 2017, as of 4 October, according to corporate travel health service Travelvax. The highest rates have been in New South Wales, followed by Queensland and South Australia. Travelvax said of the ongoing risk to travellers: “Influenza activity is past its peak in most States, however, [numbers] remain high. There has been 2.5 times the number of confirmed cases of influenza compared to last year and 370 deaths recorded in four states.”

Dozens of people have died in recent months after contracting the flu, including an eight-year-old girl in Melbourne, who died in September. Victoria’s health minister Jill Hennessy, said the number of fatalities resulting from flu shows that there is a ‘horror flu season’ ongoing. Ms Hennessy said: “The number of people with influenza has doubled. People are not just getting the flu, they’re getting very, very sick with this flu. The reality is we can’t beat nature. The ongoing lesson is we have just got to keep trying to make sure that we are better protecting and better supporting people through better vaccines and care and support.”

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