We are starting the Flu clinics from 1st October for this winter. Please contact the surgery to be booked into a clinic.
Flu vaccination ( “flu jab”) is available every year on the NHS to protect adults (and some children) at risk of flu and its complications.
Flu can be more severe in certain people such as:
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.
The flu vaccine is given free on the NHS as an annual injection to:
Flu nasal spray vaccination
The flu vaccine is given as an annual nasal spray to:
How the flu jab helps
Studies have shown that the flu jab definitely works 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.
Flu jab side effects
Serious side effects of the injected flu vaccine are very rare. You may have a slight temperature and aching muscles for a couple of days after having the jab, and your arm may be a bit sore where you were injected.
Frequently Asked Questions
A bad bout of flu is much worse than a heavy cold. Flu symptoms come on suddenly and sometimes severely. They include fever, chills, headaches and aching muscles, as well as a cough and sore throat. So, you’re likely to spend two or three days in bed. If you get complications caused by flu, you could become seriously ill and have to go to hospital.
No, it doesn’t.
The injected flu vaccine that is given to adults contains inactivated flu viruses, so it can’t give you flu.
The children’s flu nasal spray vaccine contains live but weakened flu viruses that will not give your child flu.
No, it can’t. Viruses cause flu and antibiotics only work against bacteria. You may be prescribed antiviral medicines to treat your flu. Antivirals do not cure flu but they can make you less infectious to others and can reduce the length of time that you may be ill. To be effective, antivirals have to be given within a day or two of your symptoms appearing.
A bacterial infection may occur as a result of having the flu, in which case you may be given antibiotics.
No, you aren’t. The viruses that cause flu can change every year, so you need a vaccination each year that matches the new viruses. The vaccine usually provides protection for the duration of the flu season that year.
You should have the vaccine whatever stage of pregnancy you are in. If you’re pregnant, you could get very ill if you get flu, which could also be bad for your baby. Having the jab can also protect your baby against flu after they’re born and during the early months of life.
Yes, it will. This year’s flu vaccine protects against three different flu viruses including the H1N1 swine flu virus . This is because the virus is expected to be circulating this year.
Children over the age of six months who are “at risk” of serious illness if they catch flu are eligible for a flu vaccine on the NHS. The flu vaccine is given to children as a nasal spray.
The nasal spray flu vaccine is also recommended on the NHS for all healthy two- and three-year-old children.
Eventually, the vaccination programme will be extended so that all children between the ages of six months and 16 years are able to have the flu vaccine.
You do need it if you’re in one of the risk groups. As flu is caused by several viruses, you will only be protected by the immunity you developed naturally against one of them. You could go on to catch another strain, so it’s recommended you have the jab even if you’ve recently had flu. Also, what you thought was flu could have been something else.
No, it’s not too late. It’s better to have the flu vaccine as soon as it becomes available, but it’s always worth getting vaccinated before flu comes around.
No, it can’t. Many people think that taking daily vitamin C supplements will stop them getting flu, but there’s no evidence to prove this.
Source: 10 myths about flu and the flu vaccine, NHS choice website