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The Government has announced that it is expanding its flu jab programme this winter, to ready the NHS for the risk of a second peak of coronavirus cases and to relieve winter pressures on A+E and emergency care.

Households with people on the Shielded Patient List are eligible for free flu vaccination, as well as people aged 50 - 64 who will be able to have one later in the year.

There will also be a school programme expanded to the first year of secondary schools.

Emily Holzhausen, Director of Policy and Public Affairs at Carers UK, said:

“We welcome the Government’s decision to expand the flu vaccination programme. Despite unpaid carers already being eligible for a free flu jab, we know that a significant proportion haven’t formally recognised their caring role or aren’t aware they’re eligible, so don’t get vaccinated.

“Expanding the programme to 50 – 64 year olds and raising awareness amongst this age group will help ensure many more unpaid carers get a jab and are able to keep themselves and the people they care for safe from potentially getting the flu this winter.

“It is really important that there is clear, consistent public messaging targeted at carers to ensure that they know they are eligible, and GP practices are proactive in identifying unpaid carers and encouraging them to book a flu jab.”

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