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2022 influenza vaccine - get the shot now

Annual influenza vaccination is the most important measure for you to prevent influenza and its complications.


Annual influenza vaccination is the most important measure for you to prevent influenza and its complications. Vaccination against influenza this year is even more important. Over the COVID-19 period there has been lower exposure to influenza virus and lower levels of influenza vaccine coverage compared to previous years. With borders reopening a possible resurgence of influenza can occur in 2022.

The influenza vaccine is recommended for all people aged 6 months and over. It is free for all people who are at high risk of complications from flu including for everyone aged 65 years and over.

Victoria’s Chief Health Officer, Professor Brett Sutton, advises that the influenza vaccine is available from GPs and other health care providers and is free for:

  • children from 6 months to under 5 years of age
  • anyone from 65 years of age
  • pregnant women (at any stage of pregnancy)
  • all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people from 6 months of age
  • people with underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, heart, lung and kidney disease, chronic neurological conditions, impaired immunity and haematological disorders.

For best protection people aged from 65 years are recommended the Fluad®Quad vaccine brand.

When to get the influenza vaccine

Yearly vaccination before the onset of each flu season is recommended. In most parts of Australia, flu season occurs from June to September, with the influenza vaccine typically available from April.

Recent evidence suggests optimal protection against the flu occurs within the first 3-4 months following vaccination. It is important to note that, while the influenza virus continues to circulate, it is never too late to vaccinate.

Influenza vaccine can be given at any time before, after or at the same time as your COVID-19 vaccine.

Professor Sutton said that vaccination was an important preventative measure but not the only one.

"In addition to vaccination, people should practise the usual prevention measures, including covering coughs and sneezes, regular hand washing and staying home when unwell."

Ways you can combat the spread of colds and flu this winter

Wash your hands regularly

The simplest way to prevent the spread of flu and other infectious disease is to regularly wash your hands, particularly after coughing or sneezing. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.

Cover your coughs or sneezes

If you do start coughing or sneezing, do it into your elbow or cover your nose and mouth with a tissue, throw the tissue in a plastic-lined rubbish bin and then wash your hands.

If you get sick, stay home

If you catch a cold or flu, avoid spreading it to other people. This might mean:

  • staying home
  • avoiding public places like shopping centres and public transport
  • putting off social events until you recover.

For more information on the influenza vaccine visit the Better Health ChannelExternal Link .

Reviewed 27 December 2022