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Flu Vaccination 2019/20

Flu vaccination is available every year on the NHS to help protect adults and children at risk of flu and its complications.

Flu can be unpleasant, but if you're otherwise healthy, it'll usually clear up on its own within a week.

Flu can be more severe in certain people, such as:

  • anyone aged 65 and over
  • pregnant women
  • children and adults with an underlying health condition
    (such as long-term heart or respiratory disease)
  • children and adults with weakened immune systems

Anyone in these risk groups is more likely to develop potentially serious complications of flu, such as pneumonia (a lung infection), so it's recommended that they have a flu vaccine every year to help protect them.

Who should get the flu vaccine?

The flu vaccine is routinely given to:

  • adults 65 and over
  • people with certain medical conditions
    (including children in at-risk groups from 6 months of age)
  • pregnant women
  • children aged 2 and 3 on 31 August 2019
  • children in primary school
  • frontline health or social care workers

Flu vaccine for children

The flu vaccine is free for:

  • children over the age of 6 months with a long-term health condition
  • children aged 2 and 3 years on 31 August 2019 –
    that is, born between 1 September 2015 and 31 August 2017
  • children in primary school

Children aged between 6 months and 2 years who are eligible for the flu vaccine will receive an injected flu vaccine.

Children eligible for the flu vaccine aged between 2 and 17 will usually have the flu vaccine nasal spray.

65s and over and the flu vaccine

You are eligible for the flu vaccine this year (2019/20) if you are aged 65 and over on 31 March 2020 – that is, you were born on or before 31 March 1955.

So, if you are currently 64 but will be 65 on 31 March 2020, you do qualify.

Pregnant women and the flu vaccine

If you're pregnant, you're advised to have the injectable flu vaccine, regardless of the stage of pregnancy you've reached, because there's strong evidence to suggest pregnant women have an increased risk of developing complications if they get flu. If you're pregnant, you will benefit from the flu vaccine because:

  • it reduces your chance of getting serious complications of flu, such as pneumonia, particularly in the later stages of pregnancy
  • it reduces your risk of having a miscarriage, or your baby being born prematurely or with a low birthweight because of flu
  • it will help protect your baby as they will continue to have some immunity to flu for the first few months of their life

Flu vaccine for people with medical conditions

The injected flu vaccine is offered free of charge to anyone with a serious long-term health condition, including: 

  • chronic (long-term) respiratory diseases, such as asthma (which requires an inhaled or tablet steroid treatment, or has led to hospital admission in the past), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis
  • chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
  • chronic kidney disease
  • chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
  • chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson's disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), learning disability or cerebral palsy
  • diabetes
  • problems with your spleen – for example, sickle cell disease or if you have had your spleen removed
  • a weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or medication such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
  • being seriously overweight (BMI of 40 or above)

This list of conditions isn't definitive. It's always an issue of clinical judgement.

Flu vaccination clinics

Flu Vaccination clinics are being held at the Medical Centre on the mornings of Saturday 5th, 12th, 19th October and 2nd November.

If you

  • will be 65 or over on 31 March 2020 or
  • are pregnant or
  • have a serious long-term health condition

please make an appointment to attend one of these clinics.

Vaccination clinics for children aged 2 and 3 (on 31 August 2019), are likely to take place in early November.



 
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