[ 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 vaccination
While 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 email@example.com.
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 Gov.uk