Influenza, or ‘flu’, is a highly contagious acute viral infection that affects people of all ages. Most people recover in a week or two, but flu can cause serious illness and death, especially in the very young and the elderly. Flu epidemics occur mainly in the winter and can result in widespread disruption to healthcare and other services. A vaccine is produced every year based on the strains of virus expected to be circulating.
Those eligible for an NHS vaccine:
people aged 65 years or over
pregnant women in any stage of pregnancy
people living in a residential or nursing home
the main carer for an older or disabled person
People are also advised to have the flu vaccine if they have any of the following conditions:
a heart problem
a chest complaint or breathing difficulties including, bronchitis, emphysema
a kidney disease
lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as steroid medication or cancer treatment)
a liver disease
had a stroke or a transient ischaemic attack (TIA)
a neurological condition e.g. multiple sclerosis (MS) or cerebral palsy
a problem with, or removal of, your spleen e.g. sickle cell disease
If you are eligible to have a flu vaccination, contact the surgery as soon as possible and make your appointment.