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Elthorne Park Surgery

Flu Vaccination - Winter 2017 


What is 'Flu'?

Flu (also known as influenza) is a highly infectious illness caused by the flu virus. It spreads rapidly through small droplets coughed or sneezed into the air by an infected person. For most people, flu is unpleasant but not serious. You will usually recover within a week.


Studies have shown that flu vaccines provide effective protection against the flu, although protection may not be complete and may vary between people. Protection from the vaccine gradually decreases and flu strains change over time. Therefore, new vaccines are made each year and people at risk of flu are encouraged to be vaccinated every year.



Who can have the Flu Vaccination?

The flu vaccination is offered to people in at-risk groups. These people are at greater risk of developing serious complications if they catch flu, such as pregnant women and elderly people. Please find a list of the at-risk groups as follows;

  • If you are over 65 years old
  • If you are pregnant
  • If you have a serious medical condition
  • If you are living in a long-stay care facility or home
  • If you are the main carer for an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if you fall ill
  • If you are a frontline health or social care worker
  • Morbidly obese


What are the 'At-Risk Groups'?


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 severe asthma, COPD or bronchitis 
  • Chronic heart disease, such as heart failure 
  • Chronic kidney disease 
  • Chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
  • Chronic neurological disease, such as a stroke, TIA or post-polio syndrome 
  • Diabetes  
  • 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.



I am not in an 'At-Risk Group' but I would like the Flu Vaccination...

If you do not fall into the 'At-Risk Group' category and feel that you would still like a Flu Vaccination, contact your local Pharmacy for advice.


 Can children have the Flu Vaccination? 

  • All children aged two and three years
  • If your child has an egg allergy or a weak immune system, they will not be allowed the Flu Vaccination

On the day of the appointment; NO vaccine will be given to children with severe asthma. NO vaccine will be given to children who have cold/flu symptoms with a raised temperature. 


Can pregnant women have the Flu Vaccination?


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.



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.

  • Egg Allergy: 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. 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.


Where can I have my Flu Vaccination?

We offer a Flu Clinic at the surgery run by our Nursing Team.  Please contact the Reception Team at the surgery on 020 8567 0447 to book an appointment.


You can read more about the Flu Vaccination here; http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/vaccinations/Pages/how-flu-vaccine-works.aspx



Book your Flu Vaccination TODAY! Call 020 8567 0447

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