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Carers eligible for seasonal flu vaccination

13 December 2012

If you are a carer you are entitled to a flu vaccination free of charge. The flu vaccine is offered free of charge to people who are deemed “at risk” to ensure that they are protected against catching flu and developing serious complications.

Carers UK has campaigned for carers to be included in the list of at-risk groups and we’re pleased that they’ve been included again this year. The Department of Health Annual Flu Plan - published in April 2012 - specifically identifies, as a priority group for the vaccination, 'People who are in receipt of Carer’s Allowance, or those who are the main carer of an older or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill.'

Statistics reveal that take up of the vaccine amongst carers is low at just 45% and carers often tell us that they struggle to get it.

To get the vaccination simply talk with the receptionist at your GP surgery and ask how you can book an appointment. Vaccines are given on an individual basis at the GP’s discretion depending on your need, so explain your concerns for the welfare of the person you’re looking after if you should fall ill. If your GP does not know that you are a carer, this is an excellent opportunity to let your GP know and talk to them about your caring role and what support the surgery can provide for you.

You will also be entitled to a flu jab if you are aged 65 or over or if you have health problems of your own and fall into one of the clinical risk groups. The list of at-risk groups can be found on the NHS Choices website.

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