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Horta ,  March 14, 2019

Influenza vaccination rate reaches record high in the Azores

The Regional Secretary for Health stated at the Legislative Assembly in Horta that the influenza vaccination coverage rate registered in the current influenza season reached the highest figure ever recorded in the Azores, according to the provisional data available.
"This year registers the highest rate of recent years, reaching a total of 52.2% of the target population," said Rui Luís at the presented of the available data, which does not include vaccination in pharmacies.
Rui Luís also stated that, "along with vaccination, 650 consultations were provided in health centres to avoid further pressure on hospital emergency centres."
"There is greater accessibility to hospitals due to the Government's investment in primary health care through the provision of more consultations and the development of prevention campaigns," stated the government official.
In this regard, he highlighted the investment in the Azores Health Line as demonstrated by the increase in the demand for this service. 
The Azores Health Line registered 1,151 calls in 2016, 1,478 calls in 2017 and 3,570 calls in 2018, evidencing a growth of 140% in the number of calls made last year. Between 2017 and 2019, the number of direct referrals for consultations in Health Units increased 132%.
The Regional Secretary recalled that another four nurses were recruited in early 2018 to ensure the operation of this patient follow-up service 24/7. This measure contributed to the implementation of mechanisms for reassessment of the situations identified by the Azores Health Line.
Rui Luís also pointed out that the ongoing recruitment of nurses and operational assistants at the Regional Health Service has improved the response in health prevention and promotion and will reduce congestion in regional hospitals.


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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