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Flu vaccines

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This year, with COVID-19 in circulation, it’s more important than ever that you're vaccinated to protect yourself from flu. You can get the flu vaccination for free if you fall under an eligible category.

The following people meet the criteria for a free flu vaccination:

  • pregnant women
  • children aged 2 to 11 years old
  • members of a shielding household
  • people aged 65 years or older
  • people who are in receipt of a carer’s allowance, or who are the main carer of an older or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill
  • people with a long-term health condition such as:
    • heart problems
    • chest complaints or breathing difficulties, including bronchitis, emphysema, or asthma (that requires an inhaled or tablet steroid treatment, or has led to hospital admission in the past)
    • kidney disease
    • lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as steroid medication or cancer treatment)
    • liver disease
    • previous stroke or transient ischaemic attack (TIA)
    • diabetes
    • neurological condition, for example multiple sclerosis (MS) or cerebral palsy
    • a learning disability
    • problems with your spleen, for example sickle cell disease, or you've had your spleen removed
    • are seriously overweight (BMI of 40 and above)
  • frontline health and social care workers should also be vaccinated

Ask your pharmacist or GP today if you're eligible for a free flu vaccine.

Need more information? We've answered some of your questions about the flu vaccine. There's also more information on the NHS website.

How and when will I be contacted? Do I have to wait to be contacted before booking a vaccine?

People who are eligible will be contacted by their GP and/or get a letter from the NHS Immunisation Management System. But you do not have to wait to be contacted before booking a vaccine.

Do I need to bring evidence with me if I want to book a free vaccine before I get a letter?

No, you don’t need to bring evidence with you, but if you do get an invitation or reminder letter it would help the NHS if you brought that with you when you have your appointment.

When will the vaccine be available?

Some vaccine is available from September and more will be become available in October and November.

What safety measures are being taken by GPs and pharmacists?

GP and pharmacists will take all necessary measures to make sure the flu vaccine is given in a safe environment. Venues will be disinfected, staff will wear protective equipment, and social distancing will be in place.