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Flu Aware NI is a Public Health Agency website with information on seasonal flu for winter 2013/14. This site provides a comprehensive guide to flu, including information for the public on who is most at risk, who needs a seasonal flu vaccine, how to get the vaccine and what to do if you think you have the flu, as well as information on prevention of further infection.

This year Public Health Agency (PHA) is launching the first phase of a programme that will offer flu vaccine to all children aged two to 16 years inclusive. This will help protect children against flu and reduce its spread. In the 2013/14 flu season the vaccine will be offered to children aged two and three years (PDF) and to those in school year primary six (PDF).

Information for the public

This section provides everything you need to know about flu, including who should get vaccinated, the signs and symptoms of flu, advice on prevention and how to look after yourself if you get flu.


Latest news

Seasonal flu rates remain low

Published: Thursday, 23 January, 2014 - 17:58
Influenza (commonly referred to as 'seasonal flu') is a respiratory illness associated with infection by influenza virus. Seasonal flu is made up of several strains including H1N1 (swine flu). This year’s seasonal flu vaccines include protection against H1N1. The strains circulating this year include H1N1 and this strain has already been found in small numbers of people in Northern Ireland, and as such is not unusual. At this point in the year seasonal flu rates remain low compared to previous years. Most people recover quickly from flu, usually within five to eight days. A small number of people will become more severely ill, particularly those in an at-risk group or the elderly. If you've got flu you're likely to develop some or all of the following symptoms: • a sudden fever, with a high temperature (generally above 38°C/100°F) • a chill • a severe headache • muscle aches and pains • a sense of feeling weak and tired • a dry cough • a sore throat

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine - Flusurvey

Published: Thursday, 14 November, 2013 - 14:26
In 2012-2013, the highest rates of flu were reported in the under-18 age group. In order to help control and lower the impact of flu, the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine want to understand who is most likely to be infected. This year is particularly important as it is the beginning of the roll out of flu vaccinations for children. Flusurvey are asking the public, but in particular teachers and students to complete the survey between November 2013 and March 2014 to help them find out how flu spreads and give recommendations for keeping the public healthy. If you want to take part in the flu survey visit -

Excellent start to children’s flu vaccine programme

Published: Monday, 28 October, 2013 - 15:08
The Public Health Agency’s (PHA) early flu vaccine uptake figures show that rates are high among the first two groups of children who are eligible to receive the vaccine this year. The programme has been rolled out since the start of the month, with the vaccine being administered to children using a painless nasal spray. Children aged two and three years old and primary six children are eligible to receive the vaccine this flu season. Figures show that the primary six group has achieved almost 80% uptake and many GP practices are already reporting uptake rates of 50 to 60% in their two and three year old group at this early stage in the campaign. Dr Richard Smithson, Consultant in Health Protection at the PHA, said: “This is an excellent start to the campaign and the figures are very encouraging as they show that people are recognising how a simple spray up the nose can help protect children from flu. “Many GP practices are still inviting children in and I would urge the parents of any two or three year olds who have not yet been vaccinated to join the many who have. If you haven’t heard from your GP practice yet, you can contact them to see what their arrangements are.”

Influenza Weekly Surveillance Bulletin Northern Ireland, Week 40-41 2013

Published: Thursday, 17 October, 2013 - 12:12
The Influenza Weekly Surveillance Bulletin is produced by the PHA and covers statistics for Northern Ireland. The bulletin is produced during the flu season. Flu Bulletin week 41 2013 Final.pdf

Dr Richard Smithson talks about the new childhood flu vaccine

Published: Wednesday, 2 October, 2013 - 08:53
This video answers some of the main questions you might have about the childhood flu vaccination programme which is being phased-in from September 2013. Dr Richard Smithson talks about the first two cohorts affected - two and three year olds and P6 pupils - and how they will be administered with the nasal vaccine. Click here to watch the video -


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