Time to get your flu jab

This winter, like every winter, will bring additional pressure on social care and NHS services. These essential services that, to a greater or lesser extent, we all rely on, will be working 24/7 to support its growing elderly and vulnerable population.

Every year, we encourage our NHS flu campaigns to include social care. Last year was the first year that this happened nationally and in 2019-20, we are delighted that social care will again be included. This means that if you work in social care, whether it be in a care home, care home with nursing, domiciliary care services, supported living, daytime support, or by yourself or in a small group, as a personal assistant, you qualify for a free flu jab. The Oxfordshire campaign will begin when supplies are ready. We recommend arranging with your pharmacy to bring the jab to your staff, rather relying on staff to find time in their working day, or occupying valuable GP time.

Time to get your flu jab takes an approach that focuses on the protective benefit of the flu vaccination using a “Shield” motif.

The campaign materials are better this year, more inclusive of social care showing social care staff going about their work protected by the shield of flu vaccination and the message “Help protect yourself, your family and the people you support. Get your free flu jab”.

We strongly recommend all care providers encourage their staff to be jabbed – perhaps using a time to get your flu jab jabathon to publicise your local commitment to healthy staff = healthy services. Flu jabs can save up to £28.9 million in sick day payments, or between 1 day to 5.9 days per flu episode per person. The UK flu season indicator is Australia, where there have been at least 135,952 cases of flu so far this year, compared with the average 17,349 in the previous five years, indicating that this winter may hit the UK hard.

Whilst the country is going through turmoil, social care providers and the NHS are insuring that care, support and health services are ready to support its clients and patients through the winter come what may.

Help protect yourself, your family, the people you support and your business.

Get jabbed