Have you had your flu jab?

Stay well this winter

As the weather begins to turn cold, residents across east Berkshire are encouraged to stay well this winter and get their flu vaccination.

Thousands of people nationwide visit their doctor with flu symptoms each year. Many will need hospital treatment because of flu-related complications, and in some cases, these complications can lead to death. Therefore, across east Berkshire, the three Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) together with the local authority Public Health teams are encouraging residents to play their part in the fight against flu by having their vaccination.

It is particularly important for people in the groups below to get their free flu vaccination:

  • Children aged 2, 3 and 4 years old;
  • Children aged 5 and 6 (school year 1 and 2);
  • Everyone over 65 years old;
  • Anyone with a long term condition such as diabetes, chronic liver or neurological disease;
  • Pregnant women;
  • The main carer of an older or disabled person.

Dr William Tong, Chair of the Bracknell and Ascot Clinical Commissioning Group said “If you have a long term condition such as asthma, diabetes, a neurological disease or chronic liver, kidney or lung disease, then protecting yourself against flu is vital. Catching the flu could make you seriously ill and make complications more likely.”

Dr Jim O’Donnell, Clinical Chair, NHS Slough CCG said “Flu can be serious for young children and because they mix with so many family members they are called ‘superspreaders’. For these reasons, we feel it is critical for children to be given the nasal spray to protect themselves and those around them. Children aged 2, 3 and 4 years old can attend a flu clinic at their GP practice while children aged 5 and 6 will receive the flu nasal spray at their school. The nasal spray for children offers a free, fast and painless way to protect children from flu.”

Dr Adrian Hayter, Clinical Chair, Windsor Ascot and Maidenhead CCG said “If you are expecting a baby, catching the flu could lead to some serious complications. For this reason, it is important for pregnant women to get their free flu jab. Your doctor or midwife will be able to guide you with specific advice and details of local vaccination clinics.”

As well as your GP Practice, also this year, certain local pharmacies across Berkshire are offering the flu jab free of cost, to those who are eligible. This should help those that may find it difficult attending a flu clinic at their GP practice. Click here for more information.