Free flu vaccination drive for people aged over 50 in England starts next month


Representational image (iStock)
Representational image (iStock)

AS PART OF the expanded flu vaccination initiative people aged over 50 in England will be given free flu vaccine from 1 December, the government said on Friday(20).



It further said that people will receive the flu and Covid-19 vaccinations in parallel.

Individuals aged 50-64 will get the flu vaccine from their GP or pharmacy.

Under the largest ever flu vaccination programme, vaccine will be offered to 30 million people in England this year.



“This winter is like no other, and we have to worry about the twin threats of flu and Covid-19. Covid means getting a flu jab is more important than ever this year. So we are delivering the largest ever flu vaccination programme. Free vaccinations for 50-64 years olds will now be available from GPs and pharmacies starting from 1 December,” said health secretary Matt Hancock.

Provisional data published by PHE on Thursday(19) suggests 72.9 per cent of those aged 65 and over, 45 per cent of 2 year olds and 46.8 per centt of 3 year olds have had their vaccine.

“To prepare for this challenging winter, we committed to protect as many people as possible from the flu, to keep those at risk safe and reduce the strain on our NHS,” said public health minister Jo Churchill.



“These vaccinations are already being given to our existing priority groups and that vital work will continue. More vaccine is flowing into GPs and pharmacies throughout the next few months, and I would urge anyone eligible for their flu vaccine to get one including all health and social care workers.”

Professor Jonathan Van-Tam, deputy chief medical officer for England, said: “Influenza vaccination is a critical tool to prevent severe illnesses and potential hospitalisations for thousands of people. I urge all those who are eligible for the flu vaccine, including the new group of 50-64 year olds, to book their appointments as soon as they can.”