Free flu vaccinations have been available since 1 October 2020 for those eligible and NHS Borders have seen a huge amount of Borderers coming forward.

During Phase 1 and 2 of the programme the vaccination teams at community venues, GP Practices and local community pharmacies vaccinated just under 50,000 people (74% of those eligible).

Flu vaccination is available to all eligible groups until 31 March 2021. As a large proportion of those eligible have now been vaccinated and demand has decreased considerably, those who have not yet been vaccinated should contact their local community pharmacy by telephone to book an appointment – please do not turn up without an appointment. If you have received a COVID-19 vaccination or have an appointment booked please let the pharmacy team know when you book your flu vaccination.

Pregnant women in the Borders can still get their free flu vaccination at any stage of pregnancy by speaking to their midwife.

Flu is much more than a bad cold; it’s a virus that can make even healthy people feel very unwell.

This year with COVID-19 around, it’s even more important than ever to get the flu vaccine to protect yourself, others and to help our NHS avoid the pressure that a spike in seasonal flu could bring in addition to COVID-19.

The vaccine continues to be free for those aged 65 and over, pregnant women, children from the age of two years until the end of primary school, healthcare workers, unpaid or young carers and those with underlying health conditions such as asthma, diabetes, cystic fibrosis, multiple sclerosis and other heart, lung and liver diseases.

In addition, eligibility for the flu vaccine has been expanded to now include household members of individuals who were shielding; those aged 60 and over (who are not already eligible) and social care workers who provide direct care.

To find out more about the seasonal flu vaccine visit NHS Inform.