“Last chance” call to Milton Keynes residents over flu vaccinations

    Thousands of eligible people in Milton Keynes who have not yet come forward for flu vaccinations have been reminded that they have only a few days left to get their jab before the offer ends on 31 March 2024.

    The flu vaccine is given free on the NHS to adults who:

    • are 65 and over (including those who will turn 65 by 31 March);
    • have certain health conditions;
    • are pregnant;
    • are in long-stay residential care;
    • receive a carer's allowance, or are the main carer for an older or disabled person who may be at risk if you get sick;
    • live with someone who is more likely to get a severe infection due to a weakened immune system, such as someone living with HIV, who has had a transplant, or is having certain treatments for cancer, lupus or rheumatoid arthritis.

    Most eligible people will have been offered a vaccination appointment or drop-in by their general practice, but you can go to any pharmacy or other location which is offering jabs.

    More than 272,000 vaccinations had been given in Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes by the end of February, as part of the current offer.

    Dr Sarah Whiteman, chief medical director at Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes Integrated Care Board, said:

    “We know that there are still thousands of people out there who are eligible for a flu vaccination, but have not yet come forward.

    “Our advice remains the same: getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones against serious illness.  There are lots of different strains of the flu virus, so it’s important to get your jab every year if you are eligible.

    “There are lots of reasons why you may not yet have had your flu vaccination.  Perhaps you were unwell and unable to get your jab at the start of the winter, or maybe you originally said no but have changed your mind.  If you’ve only just found out that you’re pregnant, you may not have been eligible until now.  Whatever the reason, it’s still not too late, but the offer will close at the end of March.  Make sure you don’t miss out.

    “Finally, don’t forget that Easter falls on 31 March this year, so if you have left it to the last minute then remember that most NHS services will operate reduced opening hours over the Easter weekend.”

    If you are eligible for an NHS flu vaccine, you can:

    Some people may be able to get vaccinated through their maternity service, care home or their employer (for example, if they are a frontline health or social care worker).

    You can check your eligibility for the flu vaccination at nhs.uk/wintervaccinations, where you can also find answers to some common questions.

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