4 people most vulnerable to flu complications and why they should vaccinate

The influenza season is fast approaching and South Africans need to be prepared, according to Professor Lucille Blumberg who is the Deputy Director at the National Institute for Communicable Diseases.

We predict that the flu season will start at the second half of May and the beginning of June. Those at risk of the complications of flu need to be vaccinated in time. The vaccine takes two weeks to be effective.

Professor Lucille Blumberg, Deputy Director at the NICD

Blumberg says that there are different strains of flu for South Africans to protect themselves against, but that some individuals are more vulnerable to the complications of flu (such as pneumonia) than others. Here are the people who face the highest risks:

1. Pregnant women

2. The elderly

3. Persons living with HIV

4. Individuals suffering from other chronic diseases such as asthma and diabetes

According to Blumberg every flu season is different, and an influenza infection can affect people differently. She says that getting vaccinated for influenza can help in reducing the rate of work absenteeism for employed South Africans.

Frequently Asked Questions, answered by the NCID.

What is influenza?

According to the NCID, influenza is an acute viral respiratory infection, transmitted by the influenza virus. This virus has three main types A, B and C. Influenza A is classified into different subtypes. The currently circulating seasonal viruses are A (H1N1), influenza A (H3N2) and influenza B viruses. The flu viruses are typically in circulation in the winter months in South Africa with an average start of the first week of June, although this varies.

What are the signs and symptoms of influenza?

  • Sudden onset of fever
  • Acute upper respiratory symptoms: dry cough, sore throat
  • General symptoms: malaise, headache, fatigue, muscle pain and body aches , cold shivers and hot sweats
  • GIT symptoms: occasionally diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting (more common in children)

For more information on how to prepare for seasonal flu, visit the NCID website.

On CapeTalk and 702's Weekend Breakfast Show, Africa Melane spoke to Professor in Vaccinology, Shabir Madhi. Madhi explained that the most vulnerable people need to be vaccinated as early as possible to allow for enough time for the window period to pass and to let the vaccine become effective.

The vaccination has arrived in South Africa and is now available to the public. Ask your health practitioner for the nearest access point.

Listen to the full conversation on CapeTalk's Breakfast with Kieno Kammies:


This article first appeared on 702 : 4 people most vulnerable to flu complications and why they should vaccinate


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI
Read More
[LISTEN] Two fishy areas that the Tax Ombud wants to probe Sars for

[LISTEN] Two fishy areas that the Tax Ombud wants to probe Sars for

Tax ombudsman, Judge Bernard Makgabo Ngoepe, has obtained approval from the minister of finance to conduct two reviews on Sars.

UCT students to host fashion show to showcase local designers

UCT students to host fashion show to showcase local designers

The Awear SA #SAKotini Fashion show will take place at Memorial Hall, UCT Upper Campus on Saturday, 22 September.

Oppose bail for my baby's killers - Ocean View mom and community push a petition

Oppose bail for my baby's killers - Ocean View mom and community push a petition

Cindy Woodward lost her six-month-old child in December 2016 after she was caught in a gang crossfire in Ocean View.

New WC police ombud says he wants to be more than just a 'complaints office'

New WC police ombud says he wants to be more than just a 'complaints office'

Major-General Johan Brand was appointed as the Western Cape Police Ombudsman last month, after the resignation of Vusi Pikoli.

Why You Should Still Get the Flu Shot

Why You Should Still Get the Flu Shot

Every year as the season changes, and temperatures drop many become victims of the influenza virus. Does the flu shot protect you?

Fewer deaths in SA than any time since 2001 (and 4 other insights from Stats SA)

Fewer deaths in SA than any time since 2001 (and 4 other insights from Stats SA)

Flu kills more South Africans of all ages than HIV. This and other surprising insights from Stats SA’s latest mortality report.

Popular articles
[LISTEN] New Visa regulations could change the face of South African tourism

[LISTEN] New Visa regulations could change the face of South African tourism

Lecturer at TUT's Dept of Tourism, Unathi Henama says that the tourism sector is at the center of the economic policies in SA.

We call it Heritage Day so it's more inclusive - Coconut Kelz (Lesego Thlabi)

We call it Heritage Day so it's more inclusive - Coconut Kelz (Lesego Thlabi)

In this segment of the Current Affairs with Coconut Kelz, satirical comedian Lesego Thlabi channels Kelz to chat about Heritage Day.

'My hubby is 75 and we still do it' - stories about sex on the other side of 50

'My hubby is 75 and we still do it' - stories about sex on the other side of 50

Is biology putting the brakes on your sexuality? Callers share their experiences of sex and growing older.

'Some weed plants with high levels of chemicals have been linked to psychosis'

'Some weed plants with high levels of chemicals have been linked to psychosis'

Naked Scientist, Chris Smith shares his insights on some of the risks associated with smoking marijuana.

DStv Premium on a downward spiral, warns tech guru

DStv Premium on a downward spiral, warns tech guru

DStv has lost about 140 000 Premium subscribers to Netflix over the past two years, tech expert Arthur Goldstuck.

17-year-old learner killed teacher for not allowing him to jump the food queue

17-year-old learner killed teacher for not allowing him to jump the food queue

Spokesperson for Education department says the fact that this learner is still in Grade 10 at 17 may indicate there is a problem.

Tell me what you want: Study reveals most common sexual fantasies

Tell me what you want: Study reveals most common sexual fantasies

What are your sexual fantasies? Disclosure can bring sexual freedom, but it can also have downsides. A study lists the top trends.

3 emergency numbers you should have on speed dial and how they work

3 emergency numbers you should have on speed dial and how they work

These are the emergency numbers you should have on your cellphone and this is what you must understand about how they work.