PEOPLE are being urged to contact their GP surgeries to find out more about the availability of free flu jabs.
Flu can be unpleasant, but if you are otherwise healthy it will usually clear up on its own within a week. However, 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 (particularly 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 protect them.
Flu vaccine is the best protection we have against an unpredictable virus that can cause severe illness and death among at-risk groups, including older people, pregnant women and those with an underlying medical health condition.
Studies have shown that the flu jab does work and will help prevent you getting the flu. It won’t stop all flu viruses and the level of protection may vary between people, so it’s not a 100% guarantee that you’ll be flu-free, but if you do get flu after vaccination it’s likely to be milder and shorter-lived than it would otherwise have been.
There is also evidence to suggest that the flu jab can reduce your risk of having a stroke.
The injected flu vaccine is offered free on the NHS annually to help protect adults and children at risk of flu and its complications.
Dr Campbell, chairman of South Warwickshire GP Federation of practices says: “You can have your flu jab free on the NHS at your GP surgery. Stocks of flu vaccines arrive in September and the earlier you get your vaccination the sooner you are protected. If you are at risk of flu do not delay, contact your GP practice to find out about vaccination today.”