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29 September 2016
Press release

Protect your child from flu

GPs in east and west Suffolk and health professionals at Public Health Suffolk are urging parents to make sure their children have a nasal flu vaccination to ensure they are protected for the winter months.

It is a simple, quick and pain-free procedure– a single dose of nasal spray squirted up each nostril. 

The nasal flu vaccination will help protect children against flu and help reduce its spread to other children, including their brothers and sisters and their parents and grandparents.

Children being offered the vaccine are:

  • All children aged two, three or four years - born between 1 September 2011 and 31 August 2014
  • All children in school years one, two or three 

Children aged two, three and four will be given the vaccination at their GP practice. Children in school years one, two and three will usually be offered the vaccination in their school.

Dr Juno Jesuthasan, a GP in Ipswich and member of the clinical executive of NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group said: “When an infected person coughs or sneezes they spread the flu virus over a wide area, so the school environment is a place where flu can very easily spread.

"Ensuring your child has a painless nasal flu vaccination is the best protection you can give them against this nasty and unpredictable illness. Protecting your child will reduce the risk of brothers, sisters, parents and grandparents from catching the virus and will reduce the risk of your needing to take time off to look after children or to recover from a bout of influenza yourself.”

Dr Christopher Browning, chairman, NHS West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group said: “It is very important not to underestimate just how serious flu can be, it’s much more than just a bad cold. If a child catches flu it can lead to complications such as sinus infection and middle ear infection.

“Please protect the health of your child this winter by making sure they have a nasal flu vaccination.”

Councillor Tony Goldson, Suffolk County Council Cabinet Member for Health said: "Flu is an unpleasant illness for many people, particularly young children. That's why getting the nasal spray flu vaccination is so important to protect the health of young children and those around them. I urge you to ensure your child has a flu vaccination."

If you are a parent of a child aged two, three and four you will be contacted by your GP practice about getting your child vaccinated.  If you don’t hear anything or you want more information about when and how your child will be vaccinated against flu, talk to your GP or practice nurse.

You can read more about flu and the flu vaccination HERE

Issued by The Communications Team on 01473 770014
NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group – www.ipswichandeastsuffolkccg.nhs.uk
NHS West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group – www.westsuffolkccg.nhs.uk

Useful Links

Find out about Flu Clinics at your local Surgery

Find out more about Flu vaccinations and who should get one

Public Health Suffolk website - www.suffolk.gov.uk

Health and Wellbeing Board - www.healthysuffolk.org.uk

Over 4 million children to be offered flu vaccination (Dept of Health press release 12 Oct 2016)

Stay Well This Winter - www.nhs.uk/staywell

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