Derbyshire health: Flu vaccination is available at your pharmacy

Nurse practitioner Julie Balmer, right, injects Doctor Kate Ardern, as she gets a flu jab to promote campaign to get members of the public vaccinated against the flu virus, at Worsley Mesnes Health Centre, Wigan.

Nurse practitioner Julie Balmer, right, injects Doctor Kate Ardern, as she gets a flu jab to promote campaign to get members of the public vaccinated against the flu virus, at Worsley Mesnes Health Centre, Wigan.

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Health chiefs are reminding Derbyshire residents that they can get their flu vaccination from their local pharmacy.

With the modern day pressures and busy schedules on the health service, NHS England is encouraging eligible people to go to their pharmacy for their free flu jab.

The benefits of pharmacies are that they are often open during evenings and at weekends and are easily accessible - being located in rural areas, towns and supermarkets.

Most pharmacies are now offering the flu vaccination as an alternative to visiting your GP.

Dr Ken Deacon, medical director for NHS England (North Midlands), said: “Your local pharmacy can help you with more than you might think.

“The process is not unlike going to your GP, you’ll need to make an appointment which can be easily done online or in person.

“They will take you to private area and talk to you about your health and medication before giving you the vaccination.

“Flu can knock you off your feet, so if time is a factor having your jab at a pharmacy is a real option.”

At-risk groups include those over 65, carers, pregnant women and those with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or severe asthma, liver disease, kidney disease, heart disease, neurological diseases or HIV and AIDS.

Dr Deacon, added: “It’s important for those with a weaker immune system to be protected from flu as it can hit them harder and in some cases even be fatal.”

Even if you have had the flu vaccination before you still need to have it every year as the vaccine changes to protect against the different strains of flu which evolve each year.

Talk to your pharmacist to find out more and remember the service is still available at your GP for those entitled to a free flu jab.

More information on the flu vaccination is available by visit the NHS website www.nhs.uk/staywell