Community Health Champions | Tel: 01782 683030 | [email protected]

Stokie Street | Vaccines and Boosters

Protect yourself over Winter by getting your vaccines and boosters when offered.

This week on Stokie Street, Zi has been for her winter jabs, but John can’t see why he needs them again.

With a potentially difficult winter of respiratory illness ahead the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) is urging everyone eligible for a free flu vaccine and a COVID-19 booster to take up the offer as soon as possible. This offers you the best defence we have against COVID-19 and other respiratory infections such as flu, providing protection against hospitalisation and death.

Additional doses and boosters help boost longer-lasting protection and so it is important to get jabbed when you are invited.

The COVID-19 vaccine

You will be contacted when it’s your turn for the COVID-19 jab. When you are eligible you can book via the national booking service, this is currently open for people who are:

  • Aged 65 and over
  • Pregnant
  • At higher risk due to a health condition
  • Immunosuppressed
  • A frontline health and social care worker
  • An unpaid carer

Updates will be given once this is open to younger age groups. You may also be invited by your GP.

The flu vaccine

Flu can affect anyone but if you have a long-term health condition the effects of flu can make it worse even if the condition is well managed and you normally feel well.

You might wonder why the flu vaccine is needed every year, it’s because flu viruses change so quickly, and so last year’s vaccine may not protect you from this year’s viruses.

Who should have the flu vaccine?

All those who have any condition listed here, or who are:

  • aged 65 years or over
  • living in a residential or nursing home
  • the main carer of an older or disabled person
  • living with someone who has lowered immunity due to disease or treatment
  • a frontline health or social care worker
  • pregnant,
  • children of a certain age

As of October 2022, everyone aged 50 to 64 years old is eligible for flu vaccination. This is so at-risk patients can be prioritised first. If you’re in this age group and have a long-term health condition that puts you at risk from flu, you don’t have to wait.

But bear in mind this list is not definitive. Your GP can assess you to take into account the risk of flu making any underlying illness you may have worse, as well as your risk of serious illness from flu itself.

Resources for communicating with people who are hesitant towards vaccinations: