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Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust urges community to get flu jab ahead of Christmas

Date: 02 January 2020

Top health officials at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust (PHT) are urging people to protect themselves and their families from flu to avoid being taken ill with the virus over the Christmas period.

Healthcare workers at the Queen Alexandra Hospital (QA) in Cosham are doing their part, with over 70% of frontline staff already vaccinated to help protect their patients, colleagues, loved ones and themselves.

In order to help improve staff access to the vaccine, the Trust also increased its number of workplace vaccinators from 44 in 2018 to over 90 this year. Clinics, trolley dashes and jabathons are being held across the hospital this week in a bid to drive up vaccination rates even further.

Liz Rix, Chief Nurse at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, who is also a workplace vaccinator herself, commented: “Our workplace vaccinators have done a brilliant job vaccinating over 5,000 staff so far from all over the Trust. We want to protect our patients, protect our families and protect each other from flu and you can help us by getting your flu jab as soon as possible.”

Flu is much worse than a heavy cold. For some people, particularly those in the ‘at risk’ groups, flu can lead to serious and potentially life-threatening complications such as bronchitis and pneumonia. That is why it is so important for people to get the vaccine, as you may not be at risk yourself, but you can still pass the virus on to someone who is more vulnerable.

Free NHS flu vaccines are available for people whose welfare may be at risk if they get the flu, including:

  • Children aged two and three,
  • Primary school aged children
  • Adults aged 65 or over
  • Pregnant woman
  • People living with certain medical conditions including asthma or other respiratory conditions
  • Those living in care homes
  • Those caring for an elderly or disabled person

John Knighton, Medical Director at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, added: “Flu cases are on the increase across the country, but there is still time to be vaccinated in this area before the likely peak in our community over the next few weeks. This week in particular, before Christmas and New Year, is the best time to see your GP and get the vaccine, especially if you are in a high risk group.”

Chief Nurse Liz Rix and Medical Director John Knighton encourage flu jabs: 


To find out more about the flu virus, symptoms and treatment, go to:

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