Time for everyone to get those flu jabs

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People are being urged to keep themselves healthy this winter by signing up for the flu vaccine.

As the annual vaccination programme gets underway, health chiefs are looking for a repeat performance of last year’s campaign, when NHS Forth Valley again achieved the highest uptake of the flu vaccine in the over 65 age group.

The area logged a take-up rate of 76 per cent and was second highest for the under 65 at-risk group. Forth Valley also achieved top place in the carers category, with a 58 per cent success rate compared with the Scottish average of 47 per cent.

This year’s vaccine aims to offer protection against four strains for most age groups, and is designed to target both over-65s and also younger people who have chronic illnesses which can make flu much more dangerous.

These include people with diabetes, asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, heart disease, chronic kidney failure, liver problems, cystic fibrosis, and lowered immunity due to disease or treatment.

For further information visit www.readyforflu.scot.

GP Practices across the NHS Forth Valley area are also providing free vaccine as a nasal spray for children aged two to five, and primary school pupils are being offered the vaccine at school to help reduce the spread of the virus.