Do I really need the flu vaccine?
Did you know that last winter nearly half (48.7%) of people under the age of 65 with a kidney condition missed out on getting a free influenza (flu) vaccination in Wales?
We want more people to know that the flu vaccination is the single best way to protect against catching or spreading influenza.
People with a long term health complaint, such as a chronic kidney condition, are at a higher risk than the general population of developing complications of influenza so if they catch it, they are more likely to be very unwell. Evidence shows that people with chronic kidney disease are around eighteen times more likely to die from influenza than people without a health condition. Influenza can also make a long term health condition worse.
People with a chronic kidney condition are eligible for a free NHS influenza vaccination, and you can get it from your GP surgery or community pharmacy. Because the flu virus can change each year, and the vaccine is changed to get the best match, it’s important to have the vaccination every year.
Children from two to eight years of age are also routinely offered a flu vaccine to help protect them from catching or spreading flu. The vaccine for children is a spray – so no needle. Details of the children’s programme can be found at www.beatflu.org.
Please join us in helping raise awareness of the dangers of influenza, and help make sure that people with kidney conditions (and those who care for them) know that they can help protect themselves from influenza with a free vaccination.
Beat Flu is a public health campaign in Wales run by Public Health Wales, and aims to raise awareness of the benefits of annual influenza vaccination amongst people who could benefit by being vaccinated.
For more information visit www.beatflu.org