Flu Season is Coming - Make Sure You Are Protected

Stockport Council and its health partners are urging residents eligible for a free flu vaccination to make sure they book their annual vaccination.

By getting the flu vaccine, you’ll be able to protect yourself and your loved ones from falling ill, and protect outbreaks in the community.

Flu can be unpleasant, but if you are otherwise healthy, it will usually clear up on its own within a week. However, for some ‘at-risk’ groups, such as those aged 65 and over, expectant mums, or those with an underlying medical condition, the flu virus can be life threatening, so the NHS offers these people a free vaccination. Adults at high risk from flu are also most at risk from COVID-19 and the free vaccine is more important than ever, to help protect the nation from a double threat this winter.

This year, the programme is being expanded to help protect people from flu and ease pressure on the NHS and urgent care services.

To help increase uptake in the social care sector, for the first time, pharmacists will be able to vaccinate both residents and care home staff at the same time.

Employers of frontline health and social care workers also have a responsibility to ensure their staff can get the free vaccine.

Eligible people for the flu vaccine under the national programme this year include:

• Individuals aged 65 years or over
• Individuals aged 6 months to 64 years with a long-term health condition
• Children aged 2-3 via their GP practice
• School children in Reception up to Year 6 (Primary School)
• Year 7 children (Secondary School)
• Pregnant women
• Frontline health and social care workers (incl direct payment personal assistants)
• Main carers of an older or disabled person
• Household contacts of people on the NHS Shielded Patient List
• Those aged 50-64 years once uptake has been maximised in the most at-risk groups

Councillor Jude Wells, Cabinet Member for Adult Care and Health, said: “I’d like to thank everyone in Stockport who protected themselves against the flu last year. This year, it is even more important for individuals eligible for a free NHS flu jab to protect themselves and their loved ones this year by contacting their GP to arrange their annual flu vaccination.”

If you’re pregnant or have recently delivered (within the previous 2 weeks), you should also have the flu jab, regardless of the stage of pregnancy you’ve reached. Pregnant women are more prone to complications from flu that can cause serious illness for both mother and baby.

For further information about the flu vaccine, please visit the NHS Website.