The Public Health Agency (PHA) is today launching phase two of its childhood flu vaccination programme which will see immunisation being offered to pre-school children aged two years and over, and all primary school children. This will help protect against the disease and reduce spread.
Today’s launch comes after children in primary six and two and three year olds were offered the vaccine last year as part of phase one.
Influenza (commonly referred to as 'seasonal flu') is a respiratory illness associated with infection by influenza virus. Seasonal flu is made up of several strains including H1N1 (swine flu). This year’s seasonal flu vaccines include protection against H1N1. The strains circulating this year include H1N1 and this strain has already been found in small numbers of people in Northern Ireland, and as such is not unusual. At this point in the year seasonal flu rates remain low compared to previous years. Most people recover quickly from flu, usually within five to eight days.