Live well this winter

Stethoscope

Stay well this winter and get prepared by taking advantage of the free NHS flu vaccination.

NHS England and Public Health England (PHE) have launched their winter campaign to encourage pregnant women, parents and caregivers of children aged 2-7, those with long-term health conditions such as asthma or heart disease, and people over 65 and their carers to take simple, easy-to-achieve action that may avoid admission to hospital during the winter months by getting the free flu jab.

 

 

PHE says that getting the flu vaccine is one of the first things you can do to help you stay well. The flu virus strikes in winter and it can be far more serious than you think. Flu can lead to complications such as bronchitis and pneumonia, and even death.

 

 

The flu vaccine is free if you live in England and are in any of the following at-risk groups: 

 

  • Aged 65 years and over
  • Pregnant women  - pregnancy increases the risk of becoming seriously ill as your immune system is weakened and can cause serious complications for you and your baby. The flu jab is the safest way to help protect you and your baby and can be administered at any stage of pregnancy.
  • Have a long-term health condition - such as chronic heart disease or heart failure; kidney disease; liver disease; diabetes; severe asthma, COPD and other respiratory diseases; neurological disease; a weakened immune system due to HIV, AIDS or cancer treatment; or asplenia or dysfunction of the spleen. 
  • Children - pre-school children aged two, three and four need to see their GP. Children in school years 1, 2 and 3 in primary school will receive the vaccine at school in most areas.
  • Carers - those who care for an elderly or disabled person, or a family member whose welfare may be at risk if you are ill with flu.
Other tips for staying well this winter range from keeping your home warm, stock up on winter supplies so that you don’t need to go out if the weather is icy, and seek advice from a pharmacist at the first sign of illness.

 

 

For more information, speak to your GP or local pharmacy, or visit www.nhs.uk/staywell