ALL COVID-19 shielded patients and their household members are eligible for free flu vaccinations in Dumfries and Galloway in 2020.
The upcoming vaccination campaign will be one of the biggest ever seen within the region, and is viewed as playing a crucial role in helping to protect communities amid the ongoing danger posed by COVID-19.
Dr Nigel Calvert is Consultant in Public Health Medicine, and he said: “This year’s flu vaccination campaign couldn’t be more important, due to the double risk we’re facing this winter from both flu and COVID.
“Around two-thirds of the region’s population are being asked to take up the opportunity of the free vaccination, and this year all those COVID-19 shielded patients and their household members are eligible.”
In additional, everyone sits within an ‘at risk’ category is also eligible for the free vaccine, as are pregnant women.
Once again, everyone aged over 65 is eligible. However, as it progresses, this year’s campaign will see that eligibility extended to everyone aged over 55.
Dr Calvert said: “Crucially, we want everyone to be aware that this year’s flu vaccinations will be provided on an allocated appointment basis – with dates and locations sent out to all those who are eligible.
“We have had some people getting in touch looking to book a vaccination, but all of this is already arranged and will be set out in letters which have started going out.”
With this year’s campaign being one of the biggest ever undertaken, locations including town halls and community centres are being employed – and people are being asked to respect guidance around physical distancing, hand hygiene and wearing of face coverings when attending to receive their vaccination.
Anyone who does not qualify for a free flu vaccination can still get a vaccination through a service provided by some high street chemists.
For more information about this year’s flu vaccination campaign, please visit the website www.nhsinform.scot/healthy-living/immunisation/vaccines/flu-vaccine