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It’s not too late to protect yourself from flu

It’s not too late to protect yourself from flu

Doctors in East Lancashire are reminding people that it isn’t too late to protect themselves, their family and their colleagues from flu and to visit their GP practice or local pharmacy for the annual flu vaccination if they haven’t already done so. The flu virus can cause a sudden high temperature, headache, general aches and pains, tiredness, sore throat, coughing, loss of appetite, nausea, diarrhoea, exhaustion and a general feeling of unwell.

The flu vaccine reduces the risk of catching flu, as well as spreading it to others.

Dr Pervez Muzaffar, a GP in Darwen and a clinical lead at Blackburn with Darwen Clinical Commissioning Group, said:

Flu isn’t pleasant for most people, but they fully recover from it quite easily. However, there is a much greater risk that flu will lead to serious complications in others depending upon circumstance.

We encourage pregnant women, whatever their stage of pregnancy, the over 65s and anyone with any chronic conditions such as asthma, diabetes and chronic heart disease to get the vaccine as soon as possible. For individuals in these at risk groups who still haven’t had their vaccine it is vital to take this seriously and act now.”

You are eligible to receive a free flu vaccination if you:

• are 65 years of age or over
• are pregnant
• have certain medical conditions such as asthma or diabetes
• are living in a long-stay residential care home or other long-stay care facility
• are the main carer for an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if you fall ill

Children aged 2 and 3 on the 31 August 2019 and all primary school children are also eligible. Children up to the age of 17 with a long-term health condition such as diabetes are entitled to the vaccination as well.

Contact your GP surgery to book a flu vaccine or visit www.nhs.uk/Service-Search to find your local pharmacy.”