Connacht Rugby players John Cooney, Sean O’Brien and Rory Parata joined staff from the Saolta University Health Care Group and HSE for the launch of the Group’s flu vaccine campaign at University Hospital Galway.
This year, the Saolta Group and the HSE are particularly requesting health care workers to get the flu vaccine to protect themselves, their families and their patients.
Commenting John Shaughnessy Saolta Group Director of HR said
“as we enter the flu season we are asking all our healthcare workers to get the flu vaccine and protect themselves and their patients by helping prevent the spread of the flu. We will have clinics available at each hospital site and our working closely with our colleagues in the occupational health departments in each of our hospitals to ensure that we provide as many opportunities and locations as possible to allow staff avail of the vaccine”.
Dr Aine McNamara, Consultant in Public Health Medicine with the HSE in the West added
“Every year flu vaccine is offered to health care workers to prevent the spread of flu to vulnerable patients and to staff and this year our aim is to significantly increase the numbers of staff who avail of it. Influenza is a highly infectious acute respiratory illness caused by the influenza virus. Flu is responsible for between 200 and 500 deaths each year in Ireland. In a severe season it can cause up to 1000 deaths. It can cause serious complications such as pneumonia especially in those aged 65 and older, children under 4 years of age, those with long term medical conditions and pregnant women. The best way to prevent flu is to get the flu vaccine. Flu vaccine is a safe, effective way to help prevent flu infection, avoid hospitalisation and reduce flu related deaths and illnesses. Vaccination of healthcare workers has been shown to reduce flu-related deaths by 40%”.
For further information on the flu vaccine please visit hse.ie