Get your flu and Covid jabs booked and be winter ready

[ Message from Debs Harkins, Director of Public Health and Jackie Addison, Head of HR&OD – abbreviated ]

COVID-19 Autumn 2022 Boosters overview

With flu season nearly upon us and COVID-19 continuing to circulate, we are encouraging you to protect yourself and others from serious illness at this critical time.As well as the infection prevention measures we have been using during the pandemic, you can boost your immunity by:

  • having a flu jab – Check your eligibility for a free jab
  • having the COVID-19 booster vaccine, if you are eligible

The COVID-19 booster and the flu vaccine can be given on the same day.  We advise that you get each vaccine as soon as you can, rather than wait to get both.

Additionally, those working in care homes could be offered the opportunity to receive a COVID-19 or flu vaccine when roving teams visit care homes, however this may not always be possible.

Free flu vaccinationWhile it’s important to get the flu jab every year, it’s particularly important this year.There has been more flu circulating this year in the Southern Hemisphere than in recent years and the flu season started earlier than usual, so we can anticipate a similar situation in the UK. As well as this, the measures we have taken to avoid catching COVID-19 have meant that for the last couple of years we were also less likely to catch flu, so there may be less natural immunity in the community this year.You are more likely to get seriously ill and end up needing hospital care if you have COVID-19 and flu at the same time. The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) found that people who have COVID-19 and flu at the same time were almost six times more likely to die compared to people with neither.  So please keep doing everything you can to avoid infection.If you are already eligible for a free flu jab on the NHS you should get it through that route. You will have probably already received an invite.  If you’re not sure, one of the participating pharmacies can check when you go along and can still give you a jab even if you’re eligible for a free one on the NHS. If you have any questions about the scheme, or are not sure if you are eligible or not, please email

As well as all Calderdale Council staff, the free flu vaccine is available through this scheme for employees of some of our partner organisations, where they are not eligible to get it on the NHS.  Specifically employees who work in:

  • Calderdale care settings, including domiciliary care
  • Early years settings and early years providers
  • Primary, secondary, specialist and post-16 education providers

Get your COVID-19 booster vaccination

The NHS is offering Autumn boosters to people at greatest risk from COVID-19 to help increase their immunity from the virus during the winter months. COVID-19 is still with us and people can still become very ill or die from the virus. Having your booster will ensure you continue to have the best protection against the virus through the winter months. The NHS will invite eligible people to make an appointment when it is their turn so please wait to be contacted.  This invite will provide all the information on how to book an appointment.  Frontline Health and Social Care Workers do not need to wait to be invited and can self-declare their status and book an appointment here or ring 119. You can have your seasonal booster (Autumn booster) if it’s been at least 3 months since you had your previous dose.  If you have not had a 1st or 2nd dose of the COVID-19 vaccine yet, you should have them as soon as possible.For more information on eligibility and to book your Covid booster vaccine, visit the NHS website.

More information about the Flu Vaccine and Covid Autumn Booster on

Message from Debs Harkins and Jackie Addison regarding the hot weather spells

Message from Debs Harkins, Director of Public Health and Jackie Addison, Head of Human Resources and Occupational DevelopmentYou will be aware that the Met Office has an Amber Extreme heat warning in place until at least Tuesday, which is likely to affect everyone, not just those most vulnerable to extreme heat. There is a prediction that temperatures could reach up to 38 degrees in Halifax.This situation could lead to extreme issues for our health and care services, already under pressure because of the impact of the current Covid-19 wave. Travel companies are already advising not to travel on Tuesday in Yorkshire. In view of this we are now recommending that staff who can work at home should do so tomorrow. We are aware that there are a number of staff who work outside. For these staff we have restocked on safety sunglass and hats and all depots have stocks of sun cream and access to cold water. We have also produced this safety bulletin which went out to all managers yesterday and is in all depots today. Managers have been asked to consider the tasks that are planned for today and tomorrow and team leaders will be checking in on teams during the day. If you are unable to work from home, please familiarise yourselves with who the First Aiders are in your workplaces BEFORE they are required. If staff wish to take holiday (annual leave, flexi or lieu time) to cope with the situation, please ensure you seek approval from your managers and service permitting, flexibility will be given. Suez are have also bought their rounds forward to 6:30am starts, so they can finish them before the temperatures get too high, but will also be closely monitoring the situation throughout the day. As a reminder, the NHS website has lots of information on summer health advice. Families can also visit Healthier Together website for advice on keeping your children safe and healthy. The following graphic offers information on the difference between heat exhaustion and heatstroke. Heatstroke is a life-threatening emergency, requiring urgent medical attention by calling 999. Heat exhaustion can usually be managed by colling down through:

  • moving to a cool place such as an air-conditioned building, the shade or in front of a fan
  • Drinking cool fluids – stick to water or sports drinks
  • Spraying or sponging your skin with cool water
  • Loosen clothing

Please stay safe over the coming days and if you have to go outside in the extreme heat, wear a sun hat and sunglasses and even in cooler weather, it’s important to put on plenty of suncream.