Local people are being urged to get a flu jab as part of their pre-Christmas planning.
Doctors from NHS West Hampshire Clinical Commissioning Group are warning that as we enter the ‘official’ flu season it is important for people to be protected against the virus.
The call comes after figures reveal that fewer than half of toddlers and younger people in at risk groups have been vaccinated within the West Hampshire CCG area.
Children are able to have a nasal spray instead of an injection.
People in ‘at risk’ groups, which include pregnant women, older people and those with breathing or other long term illnesses, are particularly vulnerable to the disease and are entitled to a free NHS jab.
Other people, who do not qualify for a free injection, are being advised to protect themselves by getting a flu jab for between £5 to £10 from a chemist or supermarkets.
Dr Sarah Schofield, a local GP and CCG Chairman, said: “Flu is a nasty illness and can be very serious for some people.
“I would strongly advise people to go along and get protected. It is not too late!”
In the West Hampshire CCG area 81% of children in Years 1-4 and 71% of people aged over 65 have had their flu jabs.
The table below shows the take up of flu jabs in the West Hampshire CCG area:
65 years & over 71.3%
6 months to 65
(in at risk groups) 45.7%
Pregant women 48.0%
3 year olds 49%
2 year olds 48%
School children Years 1-4 80.8%
Flu is defined as a fever of 37.8?C or above plus new or worsening of one or more of the following symptoms:
- Runny nose or congestion
- Sore throat
- Shortness of breath