Lincolnshire residents encouraged to get their flu jab early this autumn

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People at risk of developing complications from catching flu are being encouraged to get their vaccination early this autumn.

If you’re generally healthy catching flu is unpleasant and can put a halt to your day-to-day activities, but usually you’ll recover within a week.

However, some groups of people are at particular risk from the more serious effects of flu.

They are:

older people

the very young

pregnant women

people with a health condition, particularly chronic respiratory conditions such as asthma, diabetes or heart disease

people who have a weakened immune system

These groups are eligible for a free NHS flu vaccination, as are all 2 to 4 year olds.

The jab is free for carers, so they can protect themselves from passing flu to the person they care for.

Frontline health and social care workers should be offered the vaccination through their employers.

“Flu is an unpredictable virus. It is impossible to know in advance how many serious cases there might be during the upcoming season,” said Liz Morgan, assistant director for Public Health at Lincolnshire County Council.

“I would urge anyone in one of the at risk groups to protect themselves against the effects of flu.

“It’s also really important that carers and frontline health and social care workers get the vaccination to stay healthy and avoid passing the illness on to the people they care for.

“Even if you had a jab last year it’s important to have another one this autumn if you are still at-risk because new strains circulate each year.”

To find out if you are eligible for a free vaccination and to book your appointment, contact your GP.

What is flu?

Flu is an acute viral infection of the respiratory tract (nose, mouth, throat, bronchial tubes and lungs).

The symptoms of flu include a fever, chills, headache, muscle and joint pain and fatigue.

Flu is caught through droplets of saliva that spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

It is highly infectious and can spread rapidly in closed communities. Even people with mild or no symptoms can infect others.