FLU IS NOW CIRCULATING
MAKE SURE YOU AND YOUR CHILD (IF ELIGIBLE) HAVE YOUR VACCINATION
ALL PATIENTS AGED 65 AND OVER
PATIENTS WITH A LONG TERM CONDITION OR IN A RISK GROUP* AGED 18-64
*RISK GROUP* AGED 18-64 see information below
CHILD FLU CLINICS – WE ARE NOW TAKING BOOKINGS FOR ALL CHILDREN AGED 2 AN 3 YEARS
AND – TO 17 WHO ARE IN AN AT RISK CATEGORY OR HAVE A LONG TERM CONDITION
PLEASE RING THE PRACTICE AFTER 9.30 MONDAY TO FRIDAY TO BOOK
MAIN LINE NUMBER: 01924 767 101
What harm can flu do?
People sometimes think a bad cold is flu, but having flu can often be much worse than a cold and you may need to stay in bed for a few days.Some people are more susceptible to the effects of flu. For them, it can increase the risk of developing more serious illnesses such as bronchitis and pneumonia, or can make existing conditions worse. In the worst cases, flu can result in a stay in hospital, or even death.
Am I at increased risk from the effects of flu?
Flu can affect anyone but if you have a long-term health condition the effects of flu can make it worse even if the condition is well managed and you normally feel well. You should have the free flu vaccine if you are:
- Pregnant (see below for more information)
Or have a long term condition such as:
- a heart problem
- a chest complaint or breathing difficulties, including bronchitis, emphysema or severe asthma
- a kidney disease
- lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as steroid medication or cancer treatment)
- Liver disease
- had a stroke or a transient ischaemic attack (TIA)
- a neurological condition, eg multiple sclerosis (MS), cerebral palsy or learning disability
- a problem with your spleen, eg sickle cell disease, or you have had your spleen removed
- are seriously overweight (BMI of 40 and above)
This list of conditions isn’t definitive. It’s always an issue of clinical judgement. Your GP can assess you to take into account the risk of flu making any underlying illness you may have worse, as well as your risk of serious illness from flu itself.
You can read the leaflet here: PHE_Flu_Vaccination_12pp_A5_booklet_2019
Who should consider having a flu vaccination?
All those who have any condition listed above or who are:
- aged 65 years or over
- living in a residential or nursing home
- the main carer of an older or disabled person
- a household contact of an immunocompromised person
- a front-line health or social care worker
- children of a certain age see attached leaflet PHE_Protecting_Child_Against_Flu_leaflet or Easy_read_childhood_nasal_flu_leaflet
Patients aged 65 and over please read this leaflet: UK_FLU_0419_0073-GP-Flu_Awareness_Leaflet
I had the flu vaccination last year. Do I need another one this year?
Yes; the flu vaccine for each winter helps provide protection against the strains of flu that are likely to be present and may be different from those circulating last year.
For this reason we strongly recommend that even if you were vaccinated last year, you should be vaccinated again this year. In addition protection from the flu vaccine may only last about six months so you should have the flu vaccine each flu season.
What about my children? Do they need the vaccination? BOOK TODAY CALL OUR MAIN LINE RECEPTION AFTER 9.30 AM Monday to Friday.
If you have a child over six months of age who has one of the conditions listed on page 4 of the leaflet below, they should have a flu vaccination. All these children are more likely to become severely ill if they catch flu, and it could make their existing condition worse. Talk to your GP about your child having the flu vaccination before the flu season starts.
The flu vaccine does not work well in babies under six months of age so it is not recommended. This is why it is so important that pregnant women have the vaccination – they will pass on some immunity to their baby that will protect them during the early months of their life.
Some other groups of children are also being offered the flu vaccination. This is to help protect them against the disease and help reduce its spread both to other children, including their brothers or sisters, and, of course, their parents and grandparents. This will help you to avoid the need to take time off work because of flu or to look after your children with flu.
The children being offered the vaccine this year, are:
- all two and three years of age on 31 August 2019
- all primary school-aged children
Children aged two and three years will be given the vaccination at their general practice usually by the practice nurse. Nearly all primary school-aged children will be offered the flu vaccine in school. For most children, the vaccine will be given as a spray in each nostril. This is a very quick and painless procedure. PHE_Protecting_Child_Against_Flu_leaflet and our ‘easy read’ Easy_read_childhood_nasal_flu_leaflet
For more information on children and flu vaccination see the NHS website information at www.nhs.uk/child-flu
You can download information in other languages below – just click on the link
I am pregnant. Do I need a flu vaccination this year?
Yes. All pregnant women should have the flu vaccine to protect themselves and their babies. The flu vaccine can be given safely at any stage of pregnancy, from conception onwards.
Pregnant women benefit from the flu vaccine because it will:
- reduce their risk of serious complications such as pneumonia, particularly in the later stages of pregnancy
- reduce the risk of miscarriage or having a baby born too soon or with a low birth weight
- help protect their baby who will continue to have some immunity to flu during the first few months of its life
- reduce the chance of the mother passing infection to her new baby
I am pregnant and I think I may have flu. What should I do?
If you have flu symptoms you should talk to your doctor urgently, because if you do have flu there is a prescribed medicine that might help (or reduce the risk of complications), but it needs to be taken as soon as possible after the symptoms appear.
You can get the free flu vaccine from your GP.