Availability of antiviral medication for use in residential aged care facilities
The Queensland Government is now providing Oseltamivir for influenza outbreaks in residential aged care facilities.
The Department of Health is making antiviral medication (Oseltamivir 75 mg and 30 mg) available for use in residential aged care facilities as an adjunct to managing influenza outbreaks within the facility.
Access to Oseltamivir will be through the local Hospital and Health Service following verification of an influenza outbreak in a residential aged care facility.
Residential aged care facilities should inform the local Public Health Unit of any suspected or confirmed influenza outbreaks as soon as possible and should work closely with their local Public Health Unit in monitoring and controlling the outbreak. In addition, the Public Health Unit will advise on the use of oseltamivir, in addition to all other control measures, and how it will be made available where appropriate.
Contact details for your local public health unit can be found here
There has been a high number of laboratory confirmed influenza cases reported to date this year compared to the same period in previous years. The greatest burden of disease has been in children younger than five years of age followed by adults aged 65 years and older, with the highest rate of deaths being in those aged 65 years and older. Residents of aged care facilities are at particular risk as influenza transmission and impact is increased.
Vaccination of residential aged care staff and residents, early identification and reporting of influenza outbreaks, implementation of infection control recommendations and the appropriate prescription and administration of antiviral medication will assist with preventing or rapidly controlling an outbreak.
Information on influenza in residential care facilities
Guidelines for the Prevention, Control and Public Health Management of Influenza Outbreaks in Residential Care Facilities in Australia
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