You may arrange it for yourself and your loved ones and check that older relatives will be getting theirs – but if they are supported by carers or are in a residential care setting have you asked:

What is the providers policy for their staff?

  • Do they positively promote to their staff to be vaccinated?
  • Do they allow time off to get the vaccination?
  • In a residential setting, do they arrange for them to be vaccinated when (hopefully) they have someone come in to vaccinate the people in their care?

It is not compulsory for front-line care staff to have the vaccination (even in hospitals) and a refusal to do so does not stop them being allowed to work with vulnerable people of any age. But it is worth asking the question.

As we are now in October it is time to start thinking about the annual Flu Vaccination programme.

There has been a particularly virulent strain of flu in Australia this winter that has led to higher incidence of hospital admissions and mortality. Australia is used as an early warning system for the Northern Hemisphere and the current vaccines have been modified to take this strain into account.

The NHS has stated that one of its main priorities is vaccinating front-line health and social care workers, who deal with the public and are at risk of catching and spreading the germs. A record number of NHS staff, almost 3 quarters of a million, took up their workplace jab last year.

Professor Yvonne Doyle, Medical Director at Public Health England (PHE), said:

“Every winter there is always the threat of a bad flu season. Flu is a serious illness and can even be deadly for the most vulnerable of our population. That’s why it’s vital that we are prepared and always working to offer people better protection.”

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