Local MP, Caroline Dinenage, is urging constituents to get their winter flu jab this year as part of England’s biggest flu campaign.
This year, 30 million people will be eligible for a free flu jab on the NHS to help protect those most at risk and reduce pressure on the NHS as cases of COVID-19 spike across the country. Those on the NHS Shielded Patient List can also access a vaccine.
Eligibility has been expanded to include primary school children and pregnant women, as well as giving Year 7 children a nasal spray through schools.
Dr Yvonne Doyle, Medical Director at Public Health England, said:
“It is dangerous to dismiss influenza as ‘just’ the flu – it can be extremely serious and can lead to hospitalisation, permanent disability or even death.
“The flu vaccine is more important than ever, to help reduce transmission of flu and protect the nation from the double threat of flu and COVID-19. You may be offered it for the first time this year – it is important that you take up the offer to protect yourself and others.”
Flu kills on average 11,000 in England each year, with adults at high risk from flu also most at risk from COVID-19.
Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock, said:
“This year more than ever, it’s vital that those eligible for the flu jab get it this winter, so you can protect yourself, your family and the NHS. We’re pulling out all the stops to prepare for this uniquely challenging winter and we have enough vaccines for 30 million people this year, more than we’ve ever done before.
“With the simultaneous risk of flu and COVID-19, make sure you get your flu jab if you’re eligible, don’t gather in groups larger than 6 and remember ‘Hands Face Space’, so we can look after each other.”
“I am urging all eligible constituents to get their flu jab this year, to not only protect themselves but also our NHS.
“As someone with asthma, I know that I could be really poorly if I catch the flu. That’s why I will have my jab - I want to do my bit for our local healthcare services, and I know that fellow residents will too“.