Don’t miss the opportunities to protect you and your family from potentially deadly diseases.
Throughout our lives, there are always diseases that will pose a risk to our health. Thankfully, we can all have vaccinations - “invisible life-savers” - to protect us from them.
If you have children, getting them vaccinated isn’t like giving them medicine when they’re already poorly. Instead, vaccinations prevent them from getting potentially life-threatening illnesses, such as measles, polio and meningitis C, in the first place. Find out about the national vaccination programme by following this link.
- Effective - Having a vaccination is always much safer than not having one. They guard against epidemics that used to kill or disable millions of children and adults.
- Targeted - At particularly vulnerable times in your life, such as during pregnancy or old age, it’s especially important that you have the recommended vaccinations.
- Safe - Although all medicines can have side-effects, those from vaccines are usually mild. Severe allergic reactions occur in less than one in a million cases.
You will usually receive a letter telling you when vaccinations are due, but make sure you are up to date by checking at www.dh.gov.uk/immunisation or by calling your local GP surgery.
Flu vaccine - is given every year, starting around October, to all people aged 65 and over, those with a long-term health condition, healthcare workers and pregnant women.
The PPV vaccine - protects the over-65s and those with a long-term health condition against some types of bacterial infection.
Whooping cough vaccine - should be given to all pregnant women between 28 and 38 weeks.
Other vaccinations - may be needed by certain “at-risk” groups such as healthcare workers, prison staff and injecting drug-users, or if you have a long term health condition. Also, if you are going abroad, you may need vaccinations such as hepatitis A, typhoid and cholera, depending on where you are travelling.
For more information, visit www.dh.gov.uk/immunisation.