The Marshall Liberal Government is today launching a new public awareness campaign which uses the “ick-factor” to remind South Australians about just how contagious the flu can be and how everyone can help to reduce its spread.
Minister for Health and Wellbeing Stephen Wade said the SA Health Flu Stops With You campaign is a timely reminder for everyone to look after themselves and each other this winter.
“In the face of what has been a horror flu season so far this year, this new campaign does a great job of illustrating just how easily the flu can spread,” Minister Wade said.
“The flu virus is spread by human contact and can live up to 48 hours on hard, smooth surfaces such as door handles, playground equipment and desktops.
“We have distributed a record-breaking number of flu vaccine doses this year to protect the most vulnerable members of our community. Now we’re asking all South Australians to remember they also have an important role to play in stopping the spread of flu.”
Last year, on the back of the record 2017 flu season, the Marshall Government took decisive action to introduce the free flu vaccination program for children aged between six months and five years.
SA Health’s Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Nicola Spurrier said children and elderly people are some of the most vulnerable to the flu.
“Colds and flu spread easily among young children and while vaccination is the best defence, there are a number of simple steps everyone can take to stop the spread of infection,” Dr Spurrier said.
“Make sure you are catching your coughs and sneezes in a tissue or your elbow, wash your hands regularly and wipe down any surfaces that you are using frequently.
“If your children are unwell, keep them away from school or childcare, and if you are feeling sick, try to stay home as much as possible and put off visiting older people until you are feeling better.
“It’s important to also stay out of the infection radius by keeping at least one metre between yourself and someone who has flu-like symptoms.
“The flu can be fatal – even to a fit and healthy person. That’s why it’s so important to protect yourself and those around you from becoming sick too.”
The campaign will run from 7 July to 21 September across TV, radio, outdoor (e.g. bus interiors and shelters, office towers and shopping centres), social media and digital platforms. Visit www.FluStopsWithYou.sa.gov.au to find out more.