Flu Vaccination - the facts
Flu is an unpredictable virus that can be unpleasant, but if you're otherwise healthy it'll usually clear up on its own within a week. It can, however, cause severe illness and even death among vulnerable groups, including older people, pregnant women and people with an underlying health condition.
The injected flu vaccine is offered free of
charge on the NHS to people who are at
risk. This is to help protect them against
catching flu and developing serious
Who should have the
flu vaccine ?
The current 2020/21 groups eligible for the NHS funded flu vaccination programme are the same as last year (although this may change if the programme is expanded) and includes
• all children aged two to ten (but not eleven years or older) on 31 August 2020
• those aged six months to under 65 years in clinical risk groups (see below)
• pregnant women
• those aged 65 years and over
• those in long-stay residential care homes
• close contacts of immunocompromised individuals
You will also be able to have the flu vaccine from your own registered practice if you are a frontline health or social care worker employed by a:
registered residential care or nursing home
registered homecare organisation
Flu vaccine for children
The flu vaccine is also free on the NHS for:
children over the age of 6 months to 18 years with a long-term health condition
healthy children aged 2 - 10 years - from the school nursing service not your GP practice
Children aged between 6 months and 2 years who are eligible for the flu vaccine will receive an injected flu vaccine. Other children aged 2 to 18 in an eligible group are offered a live attenuated quadrivalent vaccine (LAIV), given as a nasal spray.
* For more details about who is eligible - check the information on the NHS website https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/who-should-have-flu-vaccine/
How do I get my flu vaccine ?
All of our Harthill practices are offering eligible patients a flu vaccine - sometimes in specially arranged clinics or by an appointment with a practice nurse of healthcare assistant.
Please contact your own practice directly for details of their clinic dates - and all the other ways to book an appointment for your free NHS flu vaccine.
For healthy children of primary school age please be aware that the school nursing service will be administering the intranasal flu vaccine - your GP practice cannot give the flu vaccine to this group of otherwise healthy children.
If your child misses the school flu clinic there will be catch-up arrangements - please contact your child's school directly. Remember: Your GP practice cannot give a flu vaccine to these children
Community Pharmacies: Many of our community pharmacies can also administer the flu vaccine if you find that more convenient. They will notify your GP practice if you access the vaccine from them so your medical records will be updated.
Please ask your pharmacist for details about what they can offer - this service may not be available for children but most eligible adults should be able to use their local pharmacy.