Time to increase uptake of flu vaccination
NICE is calling for people who are eligible for free flu vaccination to be offered it at every opportunity New draft guidance from NICE highlights the need to educate people that having a flu vaccination each year is the single best way of protecting against catching or spreading flu.
To help reduce deaths and hospital admissions due to flu, the new draft guidance recommends eligible people are made aware and offered the vaccine every winter. This could be during a GP appointment, when picking up prescriptions or during a hospital stay or home visit. Millions of people who are at highest risk are eligible for free vaccines on the NHS. These include older people, very young children, pregnant women and those who have an underlying long-term condition, such as cardiac disease or a weakened immune system.
Professor Gillian Leng, deputy chief executive and director of health and social care at NICE, said: “The single best way to protect against the flu, and to stop it spreading, is to get the vaccination. People who are most at risk of getting the flu, and being admitted to hospital as a result, need to be made aware that they can get vaccinated at no cost. Health and social care professionals can help by using every opportunity to offer the most vulnerable people the flu vaccination each and every year. They also need to make sure they have the flu jab themselves.”