It is fair to say that the weather is changing and everyone is getting ill. A couple of weeks ago you may have seen that I was sniffling and coughing as I had caught the flu. Getting the flu is probably inevitable due to the interaction we have with so many people on a daily basis, and in my case my own family-Thanks MUM!

The government in the UK and other countries is doing a lot to ensure that everyone who is at risk of getting sicker from contracting the flu is given a flu jab. The NHS has a list of basic criteria and if you tick any of these boxes then please do contact your GP clinic:

  • are 65 years of age or over
  • are pregnant
  • have certain medical conditions (see below)
  • are living in a long-stay residential care home or other long-stay care facility
  • receive a carer’s allowance, or you are the main carer for an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if you fall ill
  • are a healthcare worker with direct patient contact or a social care worker

 Having the flu not only knocks your body out of action for a while but it also can create an unproductive workforce and create chaos at the doctor’s surgery for patients who need to be treated or parents who are there because of their children.

 The UK government is now launching a scheme to ensure 700,000 pupils to be given flu spray to. Pupils aged five to 17 will be offered nasal spray treatment called Fluenz which is set to be the biggest school immunisation pilot in the last 30 years. This will, however, cost the government £100million a year – twice as much as flu jabs. The school nasal spray vaccination pilot is being run by 12 local authorities in the North East, the Midlands, Yorkshire, East Anglia and Sussex. Parents will receive letters inviting them to let their children receive Fluenz from the school nurse.

Doctors think the nasal spray has great potential to encourage uptake among children averse to needles.

 It’s a sad fact that Flu contributed to around 8,000 UK deaths last year and on today’s show I was joined by Dr Nish a local GP who said that it was vital for people to wrap up warm, ensure that they take care of themselves and make sure that if they experience further problems they must see advice from their GP immediately.

Dr Nish Rajpal, a local GP said it was important not to over eat during the festival period and use religious occasions as an excuse to indulge. He emphasised the need to follow the hugely popular government scheme “Catch it, Bin it, Kill it” to ensure that we all have a healthy winter.