Bupa Foundation shields vulnerable Australians with free flu shots

Effort is part of longstanding partnership with non-profit

Bupa Foundation shields vulnerable Australians with free flu shots

Insurance News

By Roxanne Libatique

The Bupa Foundation has launched a campaign to provide free flu vaccinations to vendors of The Big Issue in response to an early onset of the flu season in Australia.

The Big Issue is an Australian non-profit that provides opportunities for people experiencing homelessness and disadvantage.

This effort is part of an ongoing collaboration that commenced in 2018, and to date, has administered over 1,000 free flu shots to vendors.

Bupa Foundation 2024 flu vaccinations for The Big Issue vendors

The 2024 vaccination rollout occurred at The Big Issue’s various locations across Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, and Perth throughout April and May.

Bupa Asia Pacific’s chief sustainability and corporate affairs officer, Roger Sharp, said the partnership reflects the company’s commitment to improving the health conditions for at-risk groups.

“The Big Issue is an inspiring social enterprise that empowers people who are experiencing homelessness or disadvantage to earn an income and reconnect with their local community and wider society,” he said. “Through the Bupa Foundation, we are delighted to support The Big Issue vendors by providing them with flu shots which can help prevent infection and help them maintain their wellbeing as we enter the cold winter period.”

Australia’s flu season in 2024

The Australian Department of Health has warned that the flu season in 2024 is likely to be more intense than in previous years due to the appearance of new virus strains, with a 40% increase in flu cases compared to last year.

The Big Issue CEO Steven Persson noted the importance of accessible health services like vaccinations for people living in precarious conditions.

“We are thankful for the ongoing support from Bupa, providing annual flu vaccinations to The Big Issue vendors to help keep them safe and healthy while they are selling magazines on the street. People experiencing homelessness and disadvantage may not have adequate access to health resources like vaccinations, so we are grateful for this opportunity,” he said.

Bupa, which recently launched a campaign to inspire healthier choices, is urging Australians to support The Big Issue vendors by purchasing the magazine and to protect themselves and their families by getting vaccinated at their local healthcare providers.

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