Thousands of those aged 65 and over urged to get their flu vaccinationHealth and wellbeing
08 November 2023
Those who are aged 65 years and over are being encouraged to get their free flu vaccination this winter to help them stay well.
Flu is a highly contagious infection that anyone can catch, with many experiencing unpleasant symptoms such as a high temperature, body ache, headache, and sore throat. However, for vulnerable people which includes those aged 65 and over, flu can lead to serious complications such as pneumonia, and can even be fatal.
Those in this age group are also eligible to receive the free COVID-19 vaccine which can safely be administered with the flu vaccination, at one appointment.
In Northamptonshire we are seeing a slight increase in respiratory infections across all age groups therefore we urge our residents who are eligible to get their free flu and COVID-19 vaccinations and stay protected this winter. Almost 38% of our population ages 65 and above have not yet received their flu vaccination putting them at risk of being infected with flu and developing complications.
It is important that we all take steps to look after ourselves and protect our loved ones, especially over the colder months when we know illnesses spread more easily. If you are eligible to receive a free vaccinations to please take up this opportunity as soon as possible, ahead of the winter months. The vaccinations not only protect you but also those around you who may be vulnerable and at high risk of being infected.Cllr Matt Golby, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health at West Northamptonshire Council
Older adults are more likely to suffer complications from flu due to their naturally weaker immune systems. This is why over 65s are given an ‘adjuvanted’ flu vaccine, one which improves their body’s immune response.Cllr Helen Harrison, Executive Member for Adults, Health and Wellbeing at North Northamptonshire Council
Getting this protection means that over 65s can play an important part in lightening some of the health burden that seasonal flu places on the NHS.
So, I’m urging over 65s to please get your vaccinations, to help reduce the need for GP appointments and hospitalisations this Winter.
If you have not yet had your appointment, please speak to your GP or a participating local pharmacy to book an appointment.
Flu symptoms can come on very quickly and can include a sudden high temperature, an aching body, tiredness or exhaustion, a dry cough, sore throat and headache, among other symptoms. If you have flu, there are some things you can do to help get better more quickly – rest and sleep, keep warm, take paracetamol or ibuprofen, and drink plenty of water.
A pharmacist can give treatment advice and recommend flu remedies. You can find further information about flu and other respiratory illnesses, and how they can be treated, at www.nhs.uk/conditions/respiratory-tract-infection/