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Friday, January 4, 2013

It's not too late for a flu jab

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board is urging those most at risk of developing serious complications from seasonal flu, and who have not already done so, to get a free jab.
Dr Sian Owen, Immunisation Lead for the Health Board, said: ‘The annual seasonal flu immunisation campaign was launched in October and is one of the largest public health campaigns which the NHS runs to protect the population from flu infection."
 
Up to this week, 68.4 percent of people over 65 in North Wales have already had their jab but the target is for 75 percent to have the jab.
 
If you are due to have your 65th birthday before the end of March 2013 you are eligible for a free flu jab. The GP practices still have flu vaccine available to give protection to their patients against flu virus.

Leigh Pusey, Nurse Immunisation Coordinator, said: “With the announcement that the flu season has now started in the UK, it’s particularly important for children and adults who have an ‘at risk’ condition such as diabetes, heart disease or any other long term condition such as lung, kidney or liver problems to have their seasonal flu jab. If you’re not sure if you’re eligible please contact your GP to check.
 
"It’s important to remember that the seasonal flu vaccine is safe and does not contain any live virus, so it cannot cause flu. Those who had a seasonal flu jab last year will need to get a new jab this winter. As the flu virus changes every year, the flu vaccine is updated to match the latest flu viruses circulating in the community.”

Practical tips to help avoid spreading germs to others and to help avoid infection yourself include always carrying tissues, covering your cough and sneeze with a tissue, disposing of the tissue after one use and cleaning your hands as soon as you can.
 
Talk to your local GP, nurse or pharmacist to find out more or visit the NHS Choices website at: http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Flu-jab/Pages/Introduction.aspx

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