Flu vaccine

No shortage of flu vaccine, patients told

THERE is no shortage of the flu vaccine this year, health officials have insisted, and anyone who needs to get it should contact their local surgery.
There have been reports in recent days the vaccine was in short supply in the Fermanagh area. However, the Health and Social Care Board have said there is no shortage of the vaccine.
They explained a new vaccine for over 65s, Fluad, was instead being delivered on a phased basis, and this had been planned.
“Each GP surgery has its own arrangements for administering flu vaccines to eligible patients,” a HSCNI spokesman told the Herald. “Due to the phased delivery of Fluad to surgeries, which has been planned for many months now and is proceeding as scheduled, surgeries will be spreading vaccinations across October, November and early December.”
The spokesman explained each GP was allocated a proportion of each batch based on their practice size, and urged patients to “work with their surgeries.”
“If this means some patients have been asked to wait until late November or early December, then this is perfectly safe and in line with the guidance,” the said. “The key is to make sure you get it.
“Receiving the improved vaccine slightly later than in previous years will still provide better protection in over-65, and there will be enough vaccine to enable everyone who wants to be vaccinated to receive their jab before we anticipate an increase in flu vaccination.
“The important thing is to attend for vaccination as per your own GP’s arrangements, which will enable everyone who is eligible to get the vaccine in a timely and well-managed way.”
As well as the over 65s, pre-schoolers aged 2-4, pregnant women and those with underlying health conditions are also urged to get the vaccine and should contact their local GP surgery to make arrangements.

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The Fermanagh Herald is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
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