Health experts are warning a deadly flu that has spread across the United States will inevitably hit our shores.
Doctors want Australians to be prepared and to make sure they are vaccinated.
The US winter flu virus, which has hit 47 states, could be the worst the country has ever seen.
Dozens of people have died, including 20 young children. One doctor in Minnesota, where there have been 27 deaths due to the flu said today the spread of this virus this winter has been pretty much unparalleled.
Australians in the US have been struck down ill, including actor Hugh Jackman.
The three strains of flu that have taken hold across the US are the same as those that hit Australia hard last winter.
The Australian Medical Association warns it is only a matter of time before the flu returns to Australia, and it advises people at risk to get their vaccinations as early as March.
“We are a global community,” said a spokesperson. “International travel is common, these things spread early and they spread fast.”
Those most at risk include young children, pregnant women, people with chronic illness and the elderly.
Vaccine giant CSL says it has produced more than four million shots ahead of the Australian flu season.