Flu vaccination for health and social care workers
This year, with Covid-19 still in circulation, and lower levels of flu immunity due to less flu virus circulating last winter, it is more important than ever that frontline health and social care workers get their flu vaccine.
The NHS has extended its free flu vaccine offer for specific groups of health and social care workers to include carers and personal assistants employed by people receiving direct payments or personal health budgets.
Why the Flu vaccine is so important
Flu can be a serious illness, particularly for older people or those with other health conditions. Health and social care workers are looking after some of the most vulnerable people in our communities, so it is important that they help protect themselves and those receiving care against flu.
Flu spreads easily and can be passed from staff to the people they care for even if the staff member has mild or no symptoms. This is why vaccination is important for all staff working with people who are vulnerable either because they are in a clinical risk group or because they are aged 65 and over. Every year there are flu outbreaks in care homes despite high flu vaccination rates for residents. This is partly because as people age they do not produce as good an immune response to vaccination. This makes vaccination of staff caring for these people even more important.
Free Flu vaccine for SGC staff
South Gloucestershire Council is offering all employees a free flu vaccine, staff can find out more on the Council intranet pages.
You can get your flu vaccine free on the NHS at your GP surgery or a local participating pharmacy if you’re a frontline health or social care worker employed by a:
- registered residential care/nursing home
- registered homecare organisation
- person receiving direct payments or personal health budgets
- Or if you receive carer’s allowance or care for someone with a long-term health condition or a disability.
Find out more about the flu vaccine on the NHS website.