People with learning disabilities in Gloucestershire and Herefordshire are being encouraged to get their flu vaccination if they’ve been contacted by their GP.
It is estimated there are 1.2 million people in England that have a learning disability many of whom also have long term conditions such as respiratory problems. This makes them at risk of complications should they contract flu.
The vaccination is free to anyone that needs it and is available at local GP surgeries and at some pharmacists.
Children with learning disabilities can have the flu vaccination through a nasal spray.
Dr. Paul Winterbottom is a Consultant Psychiatrist (Learning Disabilities) and Medical Director at ²gether NHS Foundation Trust.
He said: “Flu can be a very unpleasant illness. It causes fever, stuffy nose, dry cough, sore throat, aching muscles and extreme tiredness. These symptoms can often last for several days and for some people, may require hospital treatment.
“People with learning disabilities can have health issues which make them more vulnerable to flu.
“If you have been contacted by your GP to get the flu jab, please visit the surgery and protect yourself against the virus as soon as possible. If you care for someone with learning disabilities, please remind them to get the free flu jab”.
For more information about the flu vaccination, along with information about where you can get the vaccination please http://www.nhs.uk/pages/home.aspx
For more information about staying well this winter, visit www.nhs.uk/staywell