Flu Vaccination Campaign 2019-2020
Booked appointments will start throughout October for the flu vaccinations; at the moment only the over 65's clinics are in place but the others will be up shortly.
Criteria for Flu Vaccinations
Adjuvanted Trivalent Vaccine (aTIV)
This vaccination is made available to all aged 65 and over and it is the most effective vaccine currently available for this group.
Quadrivalent Vaccine (QIV)
This vaccination is for pregnant women and all people aged from 6 months to 65 years of age with a serious medical condition such as:
- Chronic (long-term) respiratory disease, such as severe asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or bronchitis
- Chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
- Chronic kidney disease at stage three, four or five
- Chronic liver disease
- Chronic neurological disease, such as Parkinson’s disease or motor neurone disease, or learning disability
- Splenic dysfunction or asplenia
- A weakened immune system due to disease (such as HIV/AIDS) or treatment (such as cancer treatment)
- Morbidly obese (defined as BMI of 40 and above)
Why do we need Flu Vaccine?
Each year, a vaccine is developed to protect against the strains of flu virus that are expected to be most prevalent that winter. This 'flu jab' is used not just in the UK, but throughout the Northern hemisphere. It gives good protection (70-80% reliability) against all strains of flu included in the vaccination and lasts for a year.
The entire process of developing the seasonal flu vaccine is led, organised and overseen by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The flu jab is offered to people in at-risk groups. These are people, such as pregnant women and the elderly, who are at greater risk of developing serious complications if they catch flu.
You should check now to see if you or members of your family are in an at-risk group.
Conditions that put you at higher risk of flu
Want to know more about the conditions that put you at higher risk of flu, read our leaflet here.
Treating seasonal flu
If you are otherwise fit and healthy, you can manage your symptoms of seasonal flu at home (see below). You will usually get better without treatment.
If you are in an at-risk group and have flu-like symptoms, or if your flu symptoms are getting worse, see your GP. These groups are more likely to suffer complications from flu. You may be prescribed antiviral medication.
Antibiotics are not prescribed for flu as they have no effect on viruses. However, occasionally it may be necessary to treat complications of flu, especially serious chest infections or pneumonia.
Caring for yourself at home
- Make sure you have plenty of rest and are taking paracetamol-based cold remedies to lower your temperature and relieve symptoms.
- Some over-the-counter treatments can be given to children who have flu, according to the instructions supplied with each medicine. Under-16s must not take aspirin or ready-made flu remedies containing it.
- Always read the medicine's label or check with the pharmacist that it is suitable for children to take.
- Drink plenty of fluids while you are recovering. You may need to stay in bed for two or three days after your symptoms peak.