Influenza: Vaccination

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 26th July 2019.

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Photo of Thangam Debbonaire Thangam Debbonaire Opposition Whip (Commons)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to increase the take-up of the flu vaccination among people most at risk of flu.

Photo of Seema Kennedy Seema Kennedy The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

Those most at risk from flu including people over 65, pregnant women, and those in clinical risk groups are offered annual vaccination. At-risk patients are targeted by the Public Health England and NHS England marketing campaign, Help Us Help You, which includes television, radio and advertising supported by public relations, digital search and partnership activity. Communications this year will include messages about a wider range of flu vaccines now available which offer better protection. Help Us Help You can be viewed at the following link:

https://campaignresources.phe.gov.uk/resources/campaigns/81-help-us-help-you/overview

The annual flu letter is available at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/annual-national-flu-programme-2019-to-2020-1.pdf

Those eligible for flu vaccination can get the vaccine from their general practitioner, or in a scheme introduced in 2015/16, through local pharmacies, thus widening patient access. 80% of maternity service providers also offer vaccination to pregnant women.

As part of its assurance process NHS England works through its regional teams and clinical commissioning groups to ensure that practices with lowest uptake are contacted and action is taken to increase vaccination rates.

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