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It’s the kind of drug addiction that starts out in the open, right in the face of the people you love most. You can justify it at first, it’s legal after all. You purchase it at the pharmacy and it’s been prescribed to you by a doctor. You’re not meeting dealers in dark alleys.

WIMMERA schools have encouraged good hygiene practices as a higher than usual flu season hits the region.

Department of Health statistics show there have been 208 influenza cases in the Grampians region so far this year – up from 86 cases for the same time last year and 126 in 2016.

HEALTH professionals across the south-west are being armed with information to help in the fight against bowel cancer.

Consultant at Western Victoria Primary Health Network Rachael Bond is working with doctors and nurses at medical practices and clinics in Glenelg and Southern Grampians shires on bowel screening.

To help fight a recent surge in meningococcal cases, all Victorians aged 15-19 are now eligible for a free vaccine.

The vaccine, provided by the Victorian Government, protects against four strains of the disease.

A WIMMERA health group will lead the training and information development of a new prescription drug real-time monitoring system in Victoria.

Western Victoria Primary Health Network will lead a consortium, comprising all Victorian primary health networks to develop and deliver comprehensive training and education on the system.