Flu Clinics start again in Autumn/Winter 2018.
You need a 'flu jab' if you.....
• Are aged 65 years and over
• Live in long-term residential or nursing homes
• Have chronic heart or chest complaints including asthma
• Have chronic kidney or liver disease
• Have a chronic neurological condition
• Have diabetes
• Have lowered immunity due to disease or treatment, for example, steroid medication or cancer treatment
• Are pregnant
Health workers and carers are also offered the 'flu jab'.
The 'flu jab' is offered to those considered to be more at risk should they get flu. If you fall into one of the groups mentioned above help to control flu by having a 'flu jab'.
Now, do you want to know more about the flu, then read on .....
Influenza, or flu as it is more commonly known, is an infection caused by an influenza virus and is a respiratory illness that affects the lungs and airways.
Symptoms of flu can come on suddenly and they include :-
• Body aches
An infected person can spread the virus by coughing and sneezing. Direct contact with hands contaminated with the virus can also spread the infection.
Influenza is often called 'seasonal flu' because in the UK it circulates during the winter months each year. The virus can change slightly from the previous year so some people who come into contact with the new virus may no longer be fully immune. You need to have a 'flu jab' every year to ensure the best protection against the latest strain of the virus.
A 'flu jab' (vaccine) is developed each year and is offered to everyone of 65 years of age and over and also to people in certain 'at risk' groups who are more likely to develop complications as a result of having flu. No medical procedure is totally free from risk but the 'flu jab' is generally very safe. A common reaction is a sore arm or feeling hot for a day or two after the jab. The jab cannot give you flu because it does not contain any active viruses.
Who can get the flu? Answer = anyone
The flu virus is easily passed from person to person. Most people recover from the flu but complications can occur, particularly in the elderly and in people with certain medical conditions which can result in serious illness and may be life-threatening.
Flu vaccine for Children
From September 2013, a new annual nasal spray flu vaccine is being offered to children in certain age groups. Over time, as the programme rolls out, potentially all children between the ages of 2 and 16 could be vaccinated against flu each year with the nasal spray.
The vaccine is given as a nasal spray squirted up each nostril and works even better than the injected vaccine in children. It?s quick and painless and will mean your child is less likely to become ill if they come into contact with the flu virus.
The new nasal spray flu vaccine will not only help to protect your child from getting flu, it will also stop the disease spreading from them to their family, carers and the wider population.
Children with long-term health conditions are at extra risk from flu and it's especially important that they are vaccinated against flu each year. Children at risk of flu are already offered an annual flu injection. As the nasal spray is more effective than the injected vaccine, children aged between 2 and 18 with long-term health conditions will be offered the annual flu nasal spray instead of the injection.
The nasal spray flu vaccine has very few side effects, the main one being that vaccinated children may have a runny nose for a short time.