This is anything but a typical year and this year's flu season is likely to coincide with the continuing impact of COVID-19.
On average, flu kills over 11,000 people every year - some years this number is much higher - and it hospitalises many more.
The flu virus spreads from person-to-person, even amongst those not showing any symptoms. Unvaccinated, asymptomatic (but nevertheless infected) staff may unknowingly pass on the virus to vulnerable patients, friends, family and colleagues.
Flu can cause severe complications and flu-related staff sickness also affects service delivery, impacting on patients and on other staff. Recently published evidence suggests a 10% increase in vaccination may be associated with as much as a 10% fall in sickness absence in the NHS.
Flu can cause severe complications, but this FREE vaccination is the best protection. Whilst the threat may be invisible, the protection against it is clear.
The flu vaccine record form is available here
. It must be filled in BLOCK CAPITALS and your ID badge must be presented.
If you choose not to have the flu vaccine we would like to understand your reasons for this decision. Please help us by filling in this form.
Alternatively, you can fill it in online here: https://dchft.onlinesurveys.ac.uk/flu-opt-out-form
If you have received your flu vaccine externally, please fill out this form.
Alternatively, you can fill it in online here: https://dchft.onlinesurveys.ac.uk/external-flu-vaccination-2020
Flu Vaccination Stats (as of 15 January 2021)
As of 15 January 2021 we have vaccinated 2,756 members of staff (90%).
Sarah Jane Ridler
A Peer Vaccinator information leaflet is available here.
The flu vaccine procedure for Peer Vaccinators is available here.
Why should NHS workers be vaccinated against flu?
Having the flu vaccine protects you, your family and the people you care for from flu. On average over 11,000 people die each year from flu. Some years it’s much more and many more are hospitalised each year.
Vaccination means less staff sickness from flu, helping the NHS and social care to keep running effectively during a flu outbreak when services are particularly busy.
You can give flu to your family and those you care for even if you don’t have any symptoms. Staff who aren’t vaccinated may unknowingly pass on flu to those who are at increased risk from the virus.
Those you support feel safer and are more likely to get vaccinated when they know the people who care for them are vaccinated.
How effective is the flu vaccine?
The flu vaccine will help prevent you getting the flu and is your best protection against the virus. It will not stop all flu viruses but if you do get flu after vaccination, it’s likely to be milder and shorter-lived than it would otherwise have been.
How long does the flu vaccine take to become effective?
It takes between 10 and 14 days for your immune system to respond fully after you’ve had the flu jab.
Can the flu vaccine cause flu?
No. The injectable vaccine does not contain any live viruses, so it cannot cause flu. You may get a slight temperature, and your arm may feel a bit sore where you had the injection. Other reactions are rare.
I had the flu vaccination last year. Do I need to have it again?
Yes. The viruses that cause flu can change every year, which means the flu (and the vaccine) this year may be different from last year.
Why is it particularly important to get the flu vaccine this year?
With COVID-19 in circulation it’s especially important to get the flu vaccine this year. The flu jab won’t protect you against coronavirus, but it will help stop you spreading flu to the people you support, many of whom are vulnerable to both.
The flu jab is not an inconvenience, it can save your life
Kevin, who is a mild asthmatic, received a letter from his GP inviting him for his annual flu jab. He saw it as an inconvenience as it would have taken time out of his day and he ignored it. Sadly Kevin contracted flu and was in a coma in our Intensive Care Unit for a month.
Please take the time to watch this video and listen to Kevin's important message.
Support the Flu Campaign on Social Media
This year we're asking staff to support the flu campaign on their social media accounts.
Staff can add a flu frame to their Facebook profile picture and change their Twitter banner and Twitter profile picture.
A guide on how to do this is available here.