At-risk Advised To Prioritise The Flu Vaccine

People with health conditions, who are at greater risk from the effects of flu, are being urged to prioritise getting their flu vaccine with the virus now circulating in Scotland.

The vaccine is still available, and those eligible in the NHS Forth Valley area who still have not received it are being advised not to delay making an appointment with their GP to ensure they are protected.

Dr Henry Prempeh, Public Health Consultant, NHS Forth Valley, said: “Flu is still circulating in the community so it’s important that people most at risk ensure they are protected. This includes people with asthma, diabetes, heart and lung conditions as well as pregnant women and those aged 65 and over.

“I would encourage anyone who is eligible for a free flu jab to contact their local GP Practice and make an appointment as soon as possible.”

The flu vaccine, available free to those with health conditions, those over 65 and pregnant women, remains the best defence against the virus.

Figures show that, on average, 1,918 people have been hospitalised for flu or its complications each year in Scotland.

This winter, the Scottish Government has bought more of the vaccine than last year in response to higher demand.

Public Health Minister Joe FitzPatrick said:

“We want everyone in Scotland who is at greater risk from the dangers of flu to be protected.

“With winter here and cold weather setting in, NHS advice is to prioritise the flu vaccine, to avoid developing complications that can lead to hospitalisation.

“Our message today is that it’s not too late to get vaccinated against flu. The vaccine is still being offered at GP practices, is safe, and provides protection for up to a year.”

For further information visit or phone NHS Inform on 0800 22 44 88.