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The seasonal flu vaccination

The seasonal flu vaccine is given to millions of people in the UK each year. The specific strains of flu that are included may change from one year to the next and vaccines are thoroughly tested and are safe.

Who should get the flu vaccine?

The flu vaccine is routinely given on the NHS to:

  • adults 65 and over
  • people with certain medical conditions (including children in at-risk groups from 6 months of age)
  • pregnant women
  • children aged 2 and 3
  • children in reception class and school years 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

For 2018, there are 3 types of flu vaccine:

  • a live quadrivalent vaccine (which protects against 4 strains of flu), given as a nasal spray. This is for children and young people aged 2 to 17 years eligible for the flu vaccine
  • a quadrivalent injected vaccine. This is for adults aged 18 and over but below the age of 65 who are at increased risk from flu because of a long-term health condition and for children 6 months and above in an eligible group who cannot receive the live vaccine
  • an adjuvanted injected vaccine. This is for people aged 65 and over

If your child is aged between 6 months and 2 years old and is in a high-risk group for flu, they will be offered an injected flu vaccine as the nasal spray is not licensed for children under 2.

Find out more about who should have the flu vaccine.

If you are registered with a GP Practice in Bristol, North Somerset, Somerset or South Gloucestershire, you will currently be able to receive a vaccination from your GP practice or a pharmacy until 31st March 2019. Speak to your GP.

Some community pharmacies now offer flu vaccination to adults (but not children) at risk of flu including pregnant women, people aged 65 and over, people with long-term health conditions and carers. To find your nearest pharmacy text ‘Pharmacy Flu’ and your post code to 80011.

For further information on seasonal flu- including common symptoms and treatment options -visit the NHS Choices website.

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