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Over 65 year olds offered free protection from the flu

Thousands of residents aged 65 and over in the city are being urged to claim their free flu jab by the local NHS, reducing their risk of serious health complications from catching the common winter illness.

Flu can be bad for everyone, especially for people aged 65 or over who are at increased risk from the effects of flu as the immune system typically weakens with age.

In Brighton and Hove there are more than 36,600 people over the age of 65 years old, and a third of them missed out their free vaccination last flu season.

Last year saw 25 over 65 year olds ending up in hospital in the city due to flu, which the local NHS believes could have been avoided if they had received their free flu jab.

Dr Andrew Hodson, Clinical Chair for NHS Brighton and Hove CCG, said:

“Just two thirds of local over 65 year olds had the free flu jab last year, which meant thousands went unprotected.

“Those aged 65 years and over are now offered greater protection from influenza from the vaccine. So, this winter we are urging them to claim their free flu jab to ensure they are properly protected and don’t run the risk of developing complications and becoming more seriously ill.”

Anyone aged over 65 can receive the flu vaccine for free through their GP, and their local high street pharmacist. ­­

Find out more about the flu vaccine at www.nhs.uk