Eligible members of the public are being urged to come forward and receive their free influenza vaccine as the UK heads to its first winter with both seasonal flu and COVID-19 in circulation.
The flu usually kills an average of 11,000 people each year in England, but far less in 2020 as the coronavirus lockdown meant there was usually no personal level of social contact, with most citizens living in isolation at home and face to face. Used to wear Wear a mask outside and around public places rather than crowding together as unsafe and risk averse.
Last year’s suppression means that population immunity against the virus has not been cultivated normally and is therefore projected to make a comeback in 2021 and could cause anywhere between 15,000 and 60,000 deaths, according to modeling by the Academy of Medical Sciences. , who took Considering the triple threat posed by influenza, covid and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), the leading cause of hospitalization in children under five years of age.
Its relative absence from the global level over the past 18 months has also complicated production of vaccines against the flu, making it more difficult for scientists to establish which strains to target when modifying existing inoculations. , as is usual every year.
Nevertheless, the government is offering free NHS flu jab to 35m vulnerable groups in England to protect them from the bouts of fever, coughing attacks, pain and exhaustion that characterize the disease.
Young people over 50, with pre-existing medical conditions and healthcare workers can receive a flu vaccine and a COVID booster jab, while the former is also being made available to pregnant women and children ages two to 16. Spread through school corridors and classrooms.
GP surgeries will contact eligible patients who will prompt them to make an appointment at their local clinic or pharmacy, while others who are not entitled to a free flu vaccine can pay privately, as long as stocks are worth around £15. lives on.
Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are set to provide similar cover to similar groups, with Scottish teachers and nursery staff also eligible.
“It’s really important that people get vaccinated,” said Dr Jenny Harris of the UK Health Security Agency, formerly of Public Health England. “This is the first winter where we will have seasonal flu and COVID co-circulating.”
His message was echoed by England’s deputy chief medical officer, Professor Jonathan Van-Tam, who said: “Not many people got the flu last year because of the Covid-19 restrictions, so our communities don’t have the usual natural immunity.” Is. We’ll see the flu spreading this winter; This may be higher than normal and this makes it a significant public health concern.
“Covid-19 will still be circulating and with more people getting indoors, sadly some increase is possible… We need to take this seriously and add annual flu jab and COVID-19 boosters.” Call to defend yourself and the NHS.”
bbc radio 4s. speaking on Today Wendy Barkley, professor of virology at Imperial College London and member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said at the Friday morning program that although getting the vaccine is “a matter of personal choice for everyone … circumstance” because it “Protects you from disease but it also protects others around you”.
Professor Barclay said: “If you are likely to have an elderly relative whose own immune system doesn’t work like yours and so although they get their vaccine, it may not work 100 percent in them, you can protect them.” You can help yourself by getting yourself vaccinated.”
While the rollout of COVID vaccines in the UK this year has been a victory and has enabled society to return to normalcy with around 78.4 per cent of the adult population, the disease is now double-jabbed. hasn’t gone awayIn the UK, there were 40,701 cases reported, 681 hospitalizations and 122 deaths as of Thursday 7 October.
A significant flu outbreak combined with ongoing transmission of the coronavirus could again put the NHS under pressure, while a patient unlucky enough to be infected with both diseases at once is believed to be That is twice as likely to die compared to Kovid alone.
While it’s a message that hasn’t reached everyone, a recent Cabinet Office Opinion survey of 3,000 people revealed that one in three did not know that the two pathogens spread together. However, one-in-four did not know the flu could be fatal and one in two underestimated the annual death rate.
These last two points are particularly worrying, as the UK faced its worst flu season in 40 years in 2017-18, when over 22,000 died.
the government hopes a new TV campaign Featuring three doctors, Dr. Amir Khan, Dr. Don Harper and Dr. Karan Rajan, will address the problem and encourage people to get vaccinated this winter.
The prevalence of long COVID provides another complicating factor this year, with more than 1 million people in the UK reporting persistent symptoms for at least 12 weeks from their initial infection, according to data from the Office of National Statistics.
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /