Get the Jab, Get flu safe
Now is the time for those at greatest risk from flu to protect themselves and their families and get flu safe with a free jab.
The six clinical commissioning groups across Nottinghamshire warned that flu is a highly contagious infection that anyone can catch, and it can be a really serious illness for some. Those at greater risk from flu include people aged 65 or over, pregnant women, and people with health conditions such as severe asthma, chest or heart complaints and diabetes.
During October and November, the people at most risk will be encouraged to get flu safe with a free flu jab from their GP. The NHS in England is launching a Flu Safe campaign to remind people that they should get a flu jab. Flu Safe is a national message to highlight the importance of getting the jab, and dispels the myths around the vaccine.
Dr Stephen Shortt, clinical lead for NHS Rushcliffe Clinical Commissioning group said: “People should not underestimate the effects of seasonal flu. It is not the same as getting a cold. It can seriously affect your health and the risks of developing complications are greater if you have certain pre-existing medical conditions such as diabetes.”
The six CCGs are urging everyone who knows anyone who may be at risk from flu to tell them how important it is that they get protected. Carers and frontline health and social care staff are also encouraged to get a free jab to protect themselves and those around them.
The flu vaccine changes every year to fight the latest strains of flu so even if you had a jab last winter you need another one this year to stay flu safe. The jab doesn’t contain the ‘live’ virus so it cannot give you the flu.
Dr Raian Sheikh, from NHS Mansfield and Ashfield Clinical Commissioning Group said: “Flu can increase the risk of developing more serious illnesses such as bronchitis and pneumonia, and can make existing conditions much worse. We’re already getting people through our clinics for the flu jab, which is great but we need people to ask those most at risk – pregnant women, people over 65 and anyone with a medical condition such as asthma or diabetes – have you had your flu jab. For anyone in the at-risk groups, the flu jab is completely free and is a safe way of protecting you and your family in a matter of minutes.”
Dr Mark Jefford, Clinical Lead for NHS Newark and Sherwood Clinical Commissioning Group said: “ The NHS does all it can to prepare for flu each year but we must not be complacent or let our guard down because it is unpredictable. For those who are healthy flu can be an unpleasant but usually self-limiting disease with recovery generally within a week. It is those who are vulnerable, the very old, the very young and those with underlying illnesses that need to get protected. I would urge people to get in touch with their GP if they are in that category.”
The best time to be vaccinated is at the start of the flu season from October to early November so it’s good to get in early and get flu safe in time for the winter.
Simply contact your GP practice to arrange a convenient appointment and get your jab. It’s quick, safe and free for those most at risk from the virus.
For more information, speak to your GP or local pharmacist, or visit www.nhs.uk/flu