Flu Jabs protect you from influenza and the resulting complications.
We work fast and are practised in vaccinating you, informing you of updates required and gathering data so this does not take long. This saves all of us a lot of additional work and crucially, also saves on valuable appointments.
We will also advise you at the same time if you are eligible to be vaccinated against COVID or other viruses such as shingles or pneumonia.
And finally, we also check if you are overdue a review for areas such as your blood pressure, medication, asthma, diabetes etc.
If you are eligible for the free flu vaccine, please book your vaccine at the surgery and help us gather your data and ensure your health is up to date all in one appointment.
When we vaccinate you against flu we also obtain vital data that is necessary for your medical record and care.
The surgery purchases flu vaccines on your behalf so please have your vaccine with us.
Which vaccination should I have?
In 2022/23 there are three different types of influenza vaccine available:
- Quadrivalent flu vaccine – This has been specifically developed for patients aged between 18 to 64 years old that have a long-term condition. (“At-Risk” patients). This vaccine is also given to healthy 50-64 year old patients.
- aQIV flu vaccine – This has been specifically developed for patients aged 65 and over.
- Nasal Flu – This has been specifically developed for patients aged from 6 months to 17 years of age.
Should I get the Flu Vaccination?
Yes. Flu is highly contagious.
Patients aged 50+ years are eligible for a free flu vaccination this year from 17th October 2022. Patients that are in an ‘At-risk’ cohort (have a long term condition) are eligible from 12th September.
Certain people are at greater risk of developing serious complications of flu, such as bronchitis and pneumonia. These conditions may require hospital treatment.
The flu vaccine is offered free to people who are at risk, to protect them from catching flu and developing serious complications. It is anticipated that the flu virus will circulate more this year due to many people avoiding contact with others (via lock downs) in the last 18 months.
It is very important that as many patients as possible are vaccinated in 2022/23 to help reduce the burden on the NHS whilst we continue to manage the coronavirus pandemic.
Who is eligible for the flu vaccination?
It is recommended that you have a flu jab if you fall into one or more of the following categories:
- are 50 – 64 years old and do not have a long term medical condition (vaccinations for this group will begin from 15th October 2022)
- In the ‘at risk’ group – please see the ‘People with long term medical conditions’ section below
- all pregnant women (including those women who become pregnant during the flu season)
- all those aged two and three years old (but not four years or older) on 31st August 2022
- all school-aged children who are part of the childhood programme
- have a serious medical condition (see below)
- are living in a long-stay residential care home or other long-stay care facility (not including prisons, young offender institutions or university halls of residence)
- are a carer of a friend or relative
- Obesity (patients with a BMI greater than or equal to 40)
If you are the parent of a child who is over six months old and has a long-term condition on the list below, speak to your GP about the flu vaccine. Your child’s condition may get worse if they catch flu.
It is recommended that all pregnant women should have the flu vaccine, whatever stage of pregnancy they’re in.
This is because there is good evidence that pregnant women have an increased risk of developing complications if they get flu, particularly from the H1N1 strain.
Studies have shown that the flu vaccine can be safely and effectively given during any trimester of pregnancy. The vaccine does not carry risks for either the mother or baby. In fact, studies have shown that mothers who have had the vaccine while pregnant pass some protection to their babies, which lasts for the first few months of their lives.
People with long term medical conditions
The flu vaccine is offered free to anyone who is over six months of age and has one of the following medical conditions:
- chronic (long-term) respiratory disease, such as asthma, COPD or bronchitis
- chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
- chronic kidney disease at stage three, four or five
- chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
- chronic neurological disease, such as a stroke, TIA or post-polio syndrome
- a weakened immune system due to conditions such as HIV, or treatments that suppress the immune system such as chemotherapy
If you live with someone who has a weakened immune system, you may also be able to have a flu vaccine. Speak to your GP about this.
An annual nasal spray flu vaccine is now offered to all children aged two and three as part of the NHS childhood vaccination programme. It will also be offered to children aged 2-18 with long-term health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and lung disease.
Children aged six months to 2 years with long-term health conditions aren’t able to have the nasal spray and will require the injected flu vaccine instead.
Read more information about:
- the flu vaccine for children
- which children can have the flu vaccine?
- children’s flu vaccine side effects
- children’s flu vaccine frequently asked questions
Who should not have the flu vaccination?
You should not have the flu vaccine if you have ever had an allergic reaction to a flu vaccine or one of its ingredients. This happens very rarely.
If you have had a confirmed very serious (anaphylactic) reaction to egg, have an egg allergy with uncontrolled asthma or another type of allergy to egg, your GP may decide that you should be vaccinated with an egg-free vaccine. One such vaccine is available for this flu season (called Preflucel, manufactured by Baxter Healthcare).
If no egg-free vaccine is available, your GP will identify a suitable vaccine with a low egg (ovalbumin) content.
Depending on the severity of your egg allergy, your GP may decide to refer you to a specialist for vaccination in hospital.
If you are ill with a fever, do not have your flu jab until you have recovered.
Is this year’s vaccine safe?
Although no medical procedure is totally free of risk, flu vaccines are generally very safe. The most common reaction to the jab is a sore arm, or you may feel hot for a day or two after the vaccination.
This year’s flu jabs have been tested and approved for use across the UK and in Europe. The jab cannot give you flu because it doesn’t contain any active viruses.
The Department of Health recommends that everyone who is eligible for a flu jab should have it as soon as the vaccine is available.
If you are in an at-risk group and do not have the jab, you will have a greater risk of developing serious complications or even dying if you get flu this winter.
If you haven’t had the flu vaccine and you are in a risk group, make an appointment to get vaccinated.
Find out more about the flu vaccine, including how the vaccine is made and how it protects you.
Will I receive a COVID19 vaccination when I have my flu vaccination?
Where COVID vaccine stock is available, we will offer you a COVID booster at the same time as your flu jab. If stock is unavailable at the time of your flu jab we will book you in to an appointment for your COVID booster at the closest possible date.
What should I do if I think I have Flu?
If you suspect you have Flu then please read our flu information and advice before you contact the Practice.
In most cases flu can be treated at home and will pass in 7-10 days. Advice can also be sought from your local pharmacist or NHS111
Flu is normally spread within the first 4 days, it is important that if you do suspect that you have Flu that you seek advice first BEFORE coming to the Surgery.