Flu warn­ing for preg­nant city women

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Your -

PREG­NANT women who have yet to get a flu jab this year have been ad­vised to do so sooner rather than later.

NHS Peter­bor­ough has warned that preg­nant women are among the most “at risk” of de­vel­op­ing se­ri­ous com­pli­ca­tions from flu strains, which could lead to bron­chi­tis and pneu­mo­nia.

The H1N1 strain of the virus in par­tic­u­lar dan­ger­ous be­cause it can af­fect un­born chil­dren too and brings with it an in­creased risk of pre­ma­ture or still birth.

Dr Andy Lig­gins, di­rec­tor of pub­lic health at NHS Peter­bor­ough, said: “Flu can cause se­ri­ous ill­ness in preg­nant women and in the most se­vere cases can put the lives of ex­pec­tant moth­ers and their un­born ba­bies at risk.

“This is be­cause dur­ing preg­nancy the mother’s body and im­mune sys­tem is adapt­ing to ac­com­mo­date the grow­ing baby and less able to fight off the flu virus. Flu can be pre­vented by hav­ing the free vac­cine at your lo­cal GP surgery.”

There are four groups of peo­ple most at risk from flu - preg­nant women; peo­ple with long term con­di­tions; car­ers and peo­ple over 65 years.

All peo­ple in those groups qual­ify for free flu vac­cines and are be­ing urged to con­tact their lo­cal GP.

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