GOOD HEALTH: Dr Stephen Rigby says influenza vaccines have been proven to be safe.
GOOD HEALTH: Dr Stephen Rigby says influenza vaccines have been proven to be safe. Brenda Strong

GP urges public to get a ‘jab'

THE flu, not to be confused with the common cold, kills more Australians every year then road crashes.

With the onset of winter, health professionals want us to prepare for the season often characterised by coughs, sneezes and the dreaded runny nose.

Dr Stephen Rigby has been a GP in the region for more than 30 years.

He says it's simple: if you want to avoid the flu, get vaccinated.

"Those most at risk are people under two and over 65 as well as people with chronic medical conditions," he said.

"When it comes to vaccinations, the scientific evidence supporting it is overwhelming."

Dr Rigby said that, unfortunately, there had been a lot of misinformation about vaccinations.

"It's a shame because these vaccines have proven to be very safe," he said.

Dr Rigby said influenza was life-threatening and characterised by the sudden onset of muscle pain, high fever, a dry cough.

"You literally feel like you may die."

The flu shot will cost you about $12 at your local GP and Dr Rigby said this year they had been altered to be even safer for children.

Influenza Symptoms

Characterised by the rapid onset of:

Muscle pain

High fever

Headache

Dry cough