Seasonal influenza is characterized by a sudden onset of high fever, tiredness, sore throat, muscle or body aches.
Flu symptoms can make people so exhausted and unwell that they have to stay in bed. Flu spreads easily by the infected
droplets caused by coughing, sneezing or talking.
The virus can also be spread by hands contaminated with the virus.
You can stop flu spreading by frequent hand washing, resting at home, and using tissues and masks as well as immunisation.
Vaccination is the most effective way to prevent infection and protect against the consequences of flu. In general,
vaccination is given annually. This vaccination is recommended for:
- Persons aged 65 years and above
- Young children aged 6 to 59 months
- Pregnant women
- Persons with chronic medical diseases (heart, lung, kidney, diabetes, liver, blood, and neurological diseases)
- Immunosuppressed persons
- Persons staying in long term care facilities
- Healthcare workers
Globally close to 900000 adults die from Pneumococcal Disease (PD) every year. In Singapore, the mean annual hospitalisation rate for PD
is 10.9 per 100,000 with Pneumococcal Pneumonia as the predominant type followed by Pneumococcal Septicaemia (Bacterial infection of the
blood) and Pneumococcal meningitis (inflammation of the membranes that cover the brain and the spinal cord). This rate increases significantly
to 56.4 per 100,000 amongst patients aged above 65. The risk of serious infection increases with age as the body’s ability to fight disease
declines. If you have:
- COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), your risk of contracting PD is 15.7 – 18 .0 times
- Asthma, your risk of contracting PD is 1.9 – 3.1 times
- Diabetes, your risk of contracting PD is 4.2 – 5.0 times
- Chronic cardiovascular (heart) disease, your risk of contracting PD 6.5 – 7.4 times
There are two pneumococcal vaccinations: Prevenar 13 and Pnemovax 23. They are recommended for:
- Healthy persons aged 65 years and above
- Adults with chronic (Lung, Heart, Kidney, Liver and Diabetes) illnesses
- Persons with cochlear implants or cerebrospinal fluid leaks
- Persons with anatomic or functional asplenia
- Immunocompromised patients
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