Flu vaccination

Have you had your flu vaccine yet?

Free NHS flu vaccinations are being offered to all eligible groups from October 2018 and we are encouraging those residents to get their free flu jab this autumn. The flu jab is an annual one-off vaccine, which 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 help stay flu safe.

Did you know... up to 77 percent of people with flu have no symptoms so you could be spreading the disease to your family, friends and colleagues without even knowing it.

By getting your flu vaccination you will not only be helping protect yourself but also those around you who may not be able to have the vaccine due medical reasons.

Adult flu vaccine

Please don't underestimate flu and the impact it can have on those who are most vulnerable. Make an appointment today, if you are in one of the following groups then you are eligible to receive the vaccine free on the NHS:

Adults flu vaccination programme

Eligible 18 - 64 years with long-term health condition 65 years and over Pregnant women People living in long-stay residential care homes or other long-stay facilities Carer*
Born between N/A Including those becoming age 65 years by 31 March 2019 Available at stage of pregnancy from conception onwards N/A N/A
Route Injected Injected Injected Injected Injected
Type Quadrivalent injected vaccine Adjuvanted trivalent injected vaccine Quadrivalent injected vaccine 18 years and over but below 65 years - quadrivalent injected vaccine
65 years and over - adjuvanted trivalent injected vaccine
18 years and over but below 65 years - quadrivalent injected vaccine
65 years and over - adjuvanted trivalent injected vaccine
Given by GP practice or community pharmacy GP practice or community pharmacy GP practice, community pharmacy or midwifery service GP practice GP practice or community pharmacy

*Carer - In receipt of a carer's allowance, or who are the main carer of an older or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill.

For more information about the types of flu vaccine visit the NHS Choices who should have the flu vaccine page.

Front line health and social care workers

Front line staff who are employed by a registered residential care or nursing home, registered domiciliary care provider or voluntary managed hospice provider and who are directly involved in the care of vulnerable patients or clients who are at increased risk from exposure to influenza are eligible to receive the vaccine for free. (Vulnerable means those patients or clients in a clinical risk group for flu or who are aged 65 years and over).

If you are eligible take your ID badge, a letter from your employer or a recent pay slip to a practice or pharmacy that is offering this service.

Community pharmacy locations

If you wish to receive your vaccine from a community pharmacy remember to phone and check in advance to see whether you can walk in (and that there is a pharmacist on duty when you intend to visit) or whether you need to make an appointment in advance.

Find out which community pharmacies in Herefordshire are offering the free NHS vaccine to eligible groups (including front line health and social care workers).

Private flu vaccination

If you are not in an eligible group, but would still like to receive the vaccination, some community pharmacies provide vaccinations privately. It will cost in the region of £5 to £14 depending on the pharmacy. To find out more, contact your nearest pharmacy or visit the NHS website find a pharmacy page.

Children's flu vaccine

Flu can be a very unpleasant illness for children, with potentially serious complications, including bronchitis and pneumonia, so it is important that they receive the vaccination.

To help protect children against flu the annual nasal spray flu vaccine (no needles) is offered free on the NHS to:

Children's flu vaccination programme

Eligible 6 months - 2 years with a long-term health condition 2 - 3 years 2 - 17 years with serious medical condition Reception class and school years 1 - 5
Born between N/A 1 September 2014 and 31 August 2016   Date of birth on or after 1 September 2008 and on or before 31 August 2014
Route Injected Nasal Nasal Nasal
Type Quadrivalent injected vaccine Live quadrivalent vaccine Live quadrivalent vaccine Live quadrivalent vaccine
Given by GP practice GP practice GP practice School Immunisation Service (given in school)

Vaccinations and immunisations in schools are provided by Coventry and Warwickshire Immunisations Service. More information about their service and their vaccination schedule.

To find out more about the nasal flu vaccination, please visit the NHS Choices children's flu vaccine page.

Myth buster

The flu vaccine cannot give you flu!

The injected flu vaccine contains inactivated, or killed, strains of the flu virus and therefore cannot cause flu. Read more about how the flu jab works.

The nasal spray flu vaccine for children contains live, but weakened forms of flu virus, but again this vaccine does not cause flu. Read more about how the children's flu nasal vaccine works.

If children are worried about the vaccination, it's important to reassure them that there are no needles involved, just a quick and painless nasal spray. NHS Choices has a short animated film available, which might make children feel more comfortable about having the vaccination.