• Dr Billie

I am adding a post from todays Guardian

The sentiments expressed by this frustrated over worked, overstressed medical receptionist are echoed here at premier medicine.

GP receptionists like me shouldn
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  • Dr Billie

So we have 80-90% of the Bondi Junction population having had one vaccine and about 45% with two.

SO... we have a way to go BUT getting there.

The good news is that we are being given an extra 100 Pfizer doses a week which brings us up to 400/week when we get our next delivery in 2 weeks.

We have brought in two other doctors to assist Dr Jane Law and Dr Sophie Whiteson Glass.

This was essential as Dr Hill and I have only two pairs of hands (each).

Both of these women started with us a few weeks ago an are only coming in to assist with COVID vaccines. Dr Jane 's main focus is in the disability sector and Dr Sophie is an Accident & Emergency doctor at St Vincent's Hospital.

Please remember to book online via the website for vaccinations as we need to keep the front desk phones open for other medical issues.

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  • Dr Billie

Have you noticed that we haven’t seen one of our old enemies this year, so far anyway.

And we are not the only ones who have noticed.

What am I talking about? – the FLU. It isn’t just because everyone is being diligent and getting vaccinated – because we still have a fridge full of flu vaccine – but there doesn’t seem to be any about.

There are different viruses which cause the common cold and the flu even though colloquial Aussie English seems to confuse the two. Laboratories monitor the incidence of positive swabs taken from flu cases, respiratory syncytial virus and rhinovirus, the latter two cause the common cold, and now of course COVID. There is still RSV and rhinovirus circulating but virtually NO flu virus. This is odd. Some of this can be explained by social distancing, lock downs, mask wearing, hand sanitiser use and lack of overseas travellers bringing unwanted guests home with them. But some of this cannot.

I don’t have reason but could COVID have something to do with this? Does flu virus not like it and when competing for a human host COVID wins out and flu doesn’t get a look in???? I’ve really no idea but it’s an interesting thought. We know that a viral infection induces production of interferon. This is part of our response to the infection by aiding in the process that kills the viral invader. Could COVID induce higher levels of interferon which then aids us in killing the next infective agent such as FLU virus? Do COVID viruses suppress FLU viral particle division not allowing it to take a hold in the human host????

We are lucky because having a peak of COVID cases coinciding with a bad FLU season would have been devastating for us all. It would overwhelm our hospitals cause more deaths not just because more of us would be sick, but having two infections either simultaneously or one close on the heels of another would have been terrible.

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