Are YOU eligible for a free flu jab? Rollout begins THIS WEEK

Are YOU eligible for a free flu jab? Rollout begins THIS WEEK

People eligible for a free flu jab are being urged to take up the offer to help protect themselves and others against flu this winter. The best time to get the flu jab is in the autumn before the flu starts to circulate, although it is possible to get the vaccine later. But it was announced this week that Boots will now offer early access to the flu jab to customers aged 65 and over.

Can you now get a free flu jab if you’re over 65?

The full flu jab rollout is expected to begin from September 2021.

But this week, Boots announced it has started its flu jab rollout for the 65+ age group.

Boots received initial stock of this year’s Advanced Trivalent flu vaccination specifically for this age group.

Boots Pharmacist, Jyoti Bakshi, said: “It’s important this year more than ever that everyone, especially those above 65 years of age, and those deemed ‘at risk’ by the NHS, consider getting a flu jab to help protect them.

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“Currently, Boots has more than 5,000 pharmacists and technicians trained to administer more than one million flu vaccines to customers across the UK.”

A variety of providers will offer the flu jab later this year.

Other pharmacies, such as Lloyds Pharmacy, are allowing people to register their interest in a flu jab this year.

People who are not eligible for a free NHS flu jab can pay privately for flu vaccination at many pharmacies.

At Boots, the cost of a private flu vaccination service is £13.99.

The NHS is also currently preparing to start its COVID-19 vaccine booster programme in September.

The booster programme is due to start on September 6, but whether or not the programme will go ahead is still uncertain.

Experts said they are still assessing data before they confirm whether all over-50s and the clinically vulnerable will need the third jab.

Immunosuppressed people may be eligible for the vaccine, as data may suggest that protection from the first two doses is inadequate.

Adam Finn, professor of paediatrics at the University of Bristol, who sits on the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), told BBC Breakfast: “We’ve been asked to advise as to who might receive a booster if it proves necessary to give boosters.

“I think it’s becoming quite clear that there are a small group of people whose immune responses to the first two doses are likely to be inadequate – people who’ve got immunosuppression of one kind or another, perhaps because they’ve got immunodeficiency or they’ve been receiving treatment for cancer or bone marrow transplants or organ transplants, that kind of thing.

“I think it’s quite likely we’ll be advising on a third dose for some of those groups.

“A broader booster programme is still uncertain – we’ve laid out potential plans so that the logistics of that can be put together, alongside the flu vaccine programme.”

Published at Wed, 11 Aug 2021 12:04:00 +0000