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'It can be fatal' - remember to get your free flu jab this winter, Barking and Dagenham GPs urge

PUBLISHED: 15:00 24 October 2018

GPs are reminding residents to get their flu jab this winter. Photo: PA

GPs are reminding residents to get their flu jab this winter. Photo: PA

PA Archive/PA Images

As flu season approaches, GPs are reminding the borough's most vulnerable to get their free vaccination.

Barking and Dagenham CCG - the body responsible for deciding which health services are funded in the borough - is reminding residents that they may be eligible for a free flew jab this winter.

Flu is a highly contagious viral infection that anyone can catch and is most common over the winter period.

It can be very serious for some and even fatal.

Getting the flu jab or nasal spray is one of the most effective ways to ward against it.

The vaccine is updated every year to combat the latest strains.

So, those who got the jab last year will still need another this year.

Dr Jagan John, clinical lead for urgent care in Barking and Dagenham, said: “Flu has the potential to be really serious – causing complications such as bronchitis or pneumonia for those with underlying health conditions, and in some cases it can be fatal, that’s why it’s so important that people in the high risk groups make an appointment with their GP to get their flu jab.

Who is eligible for a free flu jab?

All those at increased risk from the effects of flu, including:

- Children aged two and three via their GP practice

- Children in reception class and school years one to five

- People aged 65 and over

- Pregnant women

- People with long-term health conditions such as a heart, lung, kidney or liver disease

- Carers of older or disabled people

- Everyone living in a residential or nursing home

- Front-line health and social care workers

Call your GP or pharmacist to find out if you are eligible and to get vaccinated.

People not in the above at-risk groups are advised to still get vaccinated for a small charge at their local pharmacy, to prevent the spread of the illness.

If you think you have flu, stay at home to prevent it spreading and rest until you feel better.

Call NHS 111 if you have an underlying health condition or feel really unwell.

For more info visit nhs.uk/staywell

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