Parents in Galway are being urged to get the free flu vaccine for their children by the Department of Health this Winter flu season.
Children aged 2 to 17 can get their nasal spray flu vaccine free from their GP or pharmacy, no injection required.
Children are twice as likely as adults to catch flu and can spread flu easily. Young children, in particular, are more likely than adults to be very sick from flu.
While most children who get the flu have mild symptoms, some children can be very sick. In particular, children with chronic health conditions are at risk of serious complications from flu.
Dr Regina Kiernan, Consultant in Public Health Medicine at Public Health Area F said, “Here in the West and North-West, we are seeing a rise in flu cases and many of these are in children.”
“We are urging parents to get the nasal spray flu vaccine for their children. Children are more likely than adults to catch flu, and young children in particular can be very sick from flu.”
“The vaccine is free of charge from your GP or pharmacy, it’s a safe and effective vaccine, and is the best way to protect your child from flu this winter.”
In the last 10 years in Ireland, almost 5,000 children were admitted to hospital with complications of flu. Almost 200 children had to have treatment in the ICU, and 40 children have died.
Since the start of October, we have been notified of over 200 cases of flu in the Area F region. Nearly one in every three cases have been in children.
You can find your nearest pharmacy offering the flu vaccine for your child here: https://www2.hse.ie/