Flu Vaccinations

Flu Vaccinations are available at National Pharmacies. You may also choose to receive your Flu Vaccination and COVID-19 Vaccination during the same appointment.

National Pharmacies are also administering Flu Vaccinations under the National Immunisation Program (NIP). Read our Frequently Asked Questions below to find out if you are eligible.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the flu?

Flu (influenza) is caused by a virus which is spread through the air by fluids produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or by direct contact with these fluids on surfaces or objects. The flu virus is highly contagious and symptoms are usually experienced 5 to 7 days after contact. Flu symptoms, which can last for weeks, are more severe than those associated with the common cold and include high fever, muscular aches and pains, headache, coughing and sore throat. It is estimated that each year, flu contributes to an average of 13,500 hospitalisations and 1,000 deaths among Australians aged over 50 years.

Are National Pharmacies offering vaccinations through the National Immunisation Program (NIP)?

Yes our vaccinating pharmacies offer NIP influenza to eligible patients at NO out of pocket cost. These vaccines are not likely to be available before April so if you’d like to receive your flu vaccination sooner, you will need to book and pay for a private vaccine ($21.99 members, $24.99 non-members).

Why should I have the flu vaccine?

Vaccination is the best defence against the flu. The flu vaccine stimulates the body to make antibodies, which fight the influenza virus. If you have been vaccinated, when you come into contact with the influenza virus, your body is better prepared to quickly destroy the virus, which helps to prevent you from getting the flu. If you are unlucky enough to still get the flu, the vaccine reduces the severity of the virus. The flu can also worsen underlying medical conditions such as heart conditions, asthma and respiratory conditions, diabetes, kidney disease, impaired immunity and neuromuscular disease, giving these people an even higher risk of complications from the flu.

What else can I do to prevent the flu?

In addition to vaccination, good hygiene is one of the best ways to prevent flu and other illnesses from spreading. Practices such as; hand washing, covering coughs and sneezes, binning tissues, sharing avoidance, and keeping surfaces clean.

Is there a waiting period between COVID-19 vaccination and influenza vaccination?

In a March 2022 update, the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) released advice on the relative timing of administering influenza and COVID-19 vaccines.

COVID-19 vaccines can be co-administered (given on the same day) with an influenza vaccine.

Who can have the flu vaccine?

National Pharmacies is offering the flu vaccination service for people aged 5 years* and older. *Two doses of vaccine at least one month apart are recommended for children aged less than 9 years when getting influenza vaccine for the first time, to improve their immune response. If a child only received one influenza vaccine in their first year, they only require one each subsequent year.

Which flu vaccines are National Pharmacies offering?

National Pharmacies is providing a quadrivalent (4 strain) vaccine as part of their flu vaccination service.

Do you offer a Corporate Vaccination Program?

Yes, we do. Find out more here.

Do I need a prescription?

No, a prescription is not required if you are having one of our qualified health professionals administer (inject) the vaccine to you in store.

Am I eligible for a vaccination under the National Immunisation Program (NIP)?

Please check your eligibility here.

What is the price?

$21.99 for members

$24.99 for non-members

What does the quadrivalent influenza vaccine contain?

The Australian Influenza Vaccine Committee (AIVC) recommended the following viruses for the 2023 southern hemisphere season quadrivalent influenza vaccines:

Egg-based quadrivalent influenza vaccines:

  • an A/Victoria/4897/2022 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;
  • an A/Thailand/8/2022 (H3N2)-like virus; and
  • a B/Austria/1359417/2021 (B/Victoria lineage)-like virus;
  • a B/Phuket/3073/2013 (B/Yamagata lineage)-like virus.

Cell- or recombinant-based quadrivalent influenza vaccines:

  • an A/Wisconsin/67/2022 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;
  • an A/Massachusetts/18/2022 (H3N2)-like virus; and
  • a B/Austria/1359417/2021 (B/Victoria lineage)-like virus;
  • a B/Phuket/3073/2013 (B/Yamagata lineage)-like virus.

Who is administering the vaccination at National Pharmacies?

Flu vaccinations are administered by a qualified Pharmacist immuniser and are only administered subject to a health assessment and consent prior to vaccination.

I have heard that the flu vaccine can give you the flu, is that true?

No, flu vaccines do not contain a live virus so cannot give you the flu. Some patients may, however, experience mild side effects that are similar to flu symptoms.

I received a flu shot last year, do I need to get another one this year?

Yes. Immunity decreases over time and flu vaccination is needed each year to ensure you continue to be protected. The composition of the vaccine changes every year. Vaccination is recommended in Autumn (March-May) to allow time for immunity to be strengthened before the flu season starts.

I am fit and healthy so should I get the flu vaccination?

Being fit and healthy does not protect you from the flu and it is still recommended that you get a flu vaccination.

Do I have to make a booking?

National Pharmacies have walk in appointments available at selected stores, subject to the availability of the vaccine and our health professionals. However, it is highly recommended to book online.

Do I need a valid medicare card?

No a Medicare is not required to obtain a flu vaccination.

What will be provided to me after my vaccination?

You will be provided with a vaccination record detailing the date of vaccination, the brand and the batch number of the flu vaccine administered.

Who is not able to have the flu vaccination?

There are some people that the flu vaccination may not be suitable for. If you fall into one of the categories below, please contact your GP prior to receiving the flu vaccination.

  • Patients who currently have an illness resulting in a fever greater than or equal to 38.5oC
  • People with a lowered immunity caused by either a medical condition or medical treatment.
  • People who have had a severe allergic reaction or anaphylaxis following a previous dose of the vaccine in question, or to a component of the vaccine.
  • Patient with a history of Guillian Barré syndrome
  • Patient with a bleeding disorder
  • Patients with severe chronic diseases

It is important that before receiving the vaccine you make sure to tell your immuniser if you (or your child):

  • Are unwell (have a temperature over 38.5˚C)
  • Have allergies to any other medications or substances
  • Have had a serious reaction to any vaccine
  • Have had a serious reaction to any component of the vaccine
  • Have had a severe allergy to anything
  • Have had an severe allergy reaction to eggs – the virus used in the vaccine is grown in eggs
  • Are under six months of age
  • Have had Guillain-Barré syndrome.

If you have any concerns at all as to whether the flu vaccine is right for you, please contact your GP before receiving the flu vaccine.

Are there any side effects with the flu vaccination?

The flu vaccine can cause a range of common side effects including:

  • Drowsiness or tiredness
  • Muscle aches
  • Localised pain, redness and swelling at the injection site
  • Occasionally, an injection-site lump (nodule) that may last many weeks but needs no treatment
  • Low-grade temperature (fever).

Common side effects following immunisation are usually mild and temporary (occurring only in the first few days after vaccination) and treatment is not usually required.

There is a very small risk of a serious allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) to any vaccine. This is why you are advised to remain in the pharmacy for at least 15 minutes following vaccination in case further treatment is required. Apart from anaphylaxis, other extremely rare side effects include febrile convulsions in children.

If the side effect following immunisation is unexpected, persistent or severe, or if you are worried about yourself or your child’s condition after a vaccination, contact your GP immediately, or attend your nearest hospital emergency room or, if required, call 000.


For all enquiries related to bookings (i.e. making, rescheduling or cancelling a booking as well as booking times) please refer to our online booking portal here or contact the pharmacy in which you wish to receive your flu vaccination from. Walk in appointments may be available at selected stores. Please call your pharmacy to confirm.


Your personal information may be provided to a third party for the sole purpose of vaccine administration in accordance with our privacy policy. Click here to view our Privacy Policy.

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