There’s still time for jab
People in Lanarkshire who are at risk of developing complications from flu are being advised there is still time to get the flu vaccine before the virus hits.
The number of reported cases of flu more than doubled last winter, with flu-like illness at the highest rate for seven years.
Dr David Cromie, consultant in public health medicine at NHS Lanarkshire, said: “Flu isn’t circulating widely in Scotland, as yet, so there’s still time to get the vaccine and be protected before flu illnesses spread widely.
“Last winter was a particularly bad year for flu, which is why it’s so important those who are at risk and eligible to get the vaccine, even if they feel fit and healthy. It only takes a few minutes and will help protect you for around a year.”
This year’s flu vaccination programme is already underway, offering free flu vaccination to over two million people across Scotland, including all people aged 65 and over, those aged six months and over with a health condition which puts them in an‘at-risk’group such as asthma or diabetes, and children aged 2-5 and not yet in school.
This winter, the Scottish Government has bought more vaccine than last year in response to higher demand and Lanarkshire practices have vaccines available, at present.
And the Deputy Chief Medical Officer for Scotland echoed the benefits of those eligible getting the vaccine.
Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Gregor Smith, said:“As we approach Christmas, it’s vital that people are aware of the steps they can take to protect themselves against flu.
“With temperatures dropping and winter setting in, I’d encourage those who are eligible to prioritise getting the vaccine – you can still make an appointment at your GP surgery even if they are no longer running dedicated clinics.
“It’s always worth getting vaccinated, as it’s the best defence against a virus which can be unpredictable and serious. Not only will you protect yourself, but you’ll also be playing a part in helping stop the spread of the virus this winter.”
For further information visit readyforflu.scot or phone NHS Inform on 0800 22 44 88.