Following the death of a five year old child from Leitrim last week, the HSE has urged members of the public who are considered high-risk for the H1N1 flu virus, more commonly known as swine flu, to make an appointment to be vaccinated against the illness.
The HSE have offered their sympathy to the grieving family and have urged those who may be at risk to make an appointment to be vaccinated.
“The HSE wishes to offer its condolences to the family of a child who tragically died having contracted influenza.”
The child was referred to Sligo University Hospital before being transferred to Crumlin. He was rushed to intensive care before tragically passing away.
So far this year 10 children with swine flu have been admitted to Temple Street, while 11 children have been diagnosed with swine flu at Our Lady's Hospital, Crumlin this year.
The HSE statement added, “The H1N1 flu virus, previously known as swine flu, is now a seasonal flu virus that circulates worldwide. The H1N1 strain has been included in the seasonal flu vaccine in Ireland since the 2010/2011 influenza season.”
The HSE provides the flu vaccine free of charge for all those in the at-risk groups, including: everyone over 65; anyone over six months of age with a long term illness or those with lower immunity due to disease or treatment and pregnant women.
Those who have not got a vaccine at this stage are encouraged to make an appointment with their GP or Pharmacist as the vaccine covers the virus that is around at the moment.