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February 10

New Flu vaccination for New Zealand

We are very proud to announce that in 2015, Onsite Health is offering:

1) Seasonal trivalent (3-strain) flu vaccination containing the 3 vaccine strains expected to be in circulation in 2015 as recommended by the World Health Organisation. Trivalent (3-strain) flu vaccine will be available from Monday 23 March.

2) Seasonal quadrivalent (4-strain) flu vaccination contains additional protection against a 4th (type B) strain of influenza – in addition to the 3 vaccine strains contained in the trivalent flu vaccine. Experts expect that the addition of a 2nd strain of influenza B virus will help prevent the vast majority of type B influenza.

Quadrivalent flu vaccine is new to NZ in 2015, but has been successfully used in the United States for the past 2 seasons with nearly half of the number of flu vaccine doses projected to be available in the United States during the 2014/15 season being quadrivalent flu vaccine.

Quadrivalent flu vaccination is manufactured in the same way that trivalent flu vaccines have been made for many years. Overseas studies show that quadrivalent flu vaccines have a safety profile similar to trivalent flu vaccines, with similar (mostly mild) side effects.

Quadrivalent flu vaccine will be available from Monday 20 April.

You may be aware through various media coverage that the government programme for flu vaccine supply has been delayed until at least early April. Some occupational health programmes have also been affected by the delay in vaccine supply. This delay is due to a change in vaccine strains and the complex manufacturing process that will mean that most manufacturers will take longer than usual to deliver supply of flu vaccine to NZ (http://www.influenza.org.nz/news/new-influenza-vaccine-2015-media-release-nz-doctor).

However, Onsite Health’s trivalent (3-strain) flu vaccine supplier is not tied into the government supply contract enabling Onsite Health to begin providing trivalent (3-strain) flu vaccinations from Monday, 23rd March.