On this page
- Why are seasonal vaccinations being brought forward?
- Why should I receive the flu vaccine?
- Is the flu vaccine safe and effective?
- I had the flu vaccination last year. Do I need to have it again?
- Do I still need to get my flu jab if I’ve had all of my COVID-19 vaccines?
- I’ve recently had COVID-19, can I still have my flu vaccine?
- Where do I get vaccinated?
- How do I get a vaccine appointment?
- Will I need to bring anything with me when I come to the drop-in clinic?
- How effective is the flu vaccine?
- Will the flu jab give me flu?
- Will the vaccine have side effects?
- Will the side effects be worse if I have both vaccines at the same time?
- Can I go back to work after having my vaccine?
- What do I do if I have had my vaccine(s) outside of the trust for example from my GP or the national booking service?
- Can I have my flu vaccine and COVID-19 booster at the same time?
- Is the NHS confident the vaccines are safe?
- Can I have the flu vaccine if I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?
- Is there anyone that shouldn’t get the flu vaccine?
- Is the flu vaccine and COVID-19 booster mandatory for staff?
Why are seasonal vaccinations being brought forward?
The NHS has been asked to bring forward the delivery of seasonal vaccinations following the latest expert guidance on the new BA.2.86 COVID-19 variant.
The NHS will be working quickly to ensure as many eligible people as possible are vaccinated by the end of October, in line with the latest guidance.
Why should I receive the flu vaccine?
Flu is an unpredictable virus that can kill thousands of people during a flu season.
Last year we saw a rebound in flu levels, with increased flu hospitalisations. Both the flu and COVID-19 viruses will be in circulation at the same time this winter and catching both increases the risk of serious illness.
Being healthy doesn’t reduce your risk of getting flu or passing it on. You can have flu without any symptoms and pass it on to family, friends, colleagues and patients, many of whom may be at increased risk from flu.
Getting your vaccine is straight forward and while some people may experience some mild short lived side effects, they will keep you protected and if you do run into the flu, your symptoms will be milder and you will recover faster, cutting your risk of being hospitalised.
Is the flu vaccine safe and effective?
The flu vaccine has a good safety and effectiveness record. It can provide protection to those that are most likely to become seriously ill from flu and help reduce the spread of flu in the population.
Up to 90 days from vaccination, flu vaccines cut the risk of flu hospitalisation by around a quarter in older adults, and one third in younger adults. If you do get flu after vaccination, its likely to be milder and not last as long.
I had the flu vaccination last year. Do I need to have it again?
Yes, because the viruses that cause flu can change every year. This means the flu (and the vaccine) this year may be different from last year. If you had the flu vaccine last year, either because you were and health and social care worker, pregnant or because you’re in a vulnerable group, you need to have it again this year.
Do I still need to get my flu jab if I’ve had all of my COVID-19 vaccines?
Yes, the COVID-19 vaccine does not protect you from flu, and vice versa. As you are
eligible for both vaccines you should have them both.
I’ve recently had COVID-19, can I still have my flu vaccine?
If you’ve had COVID-19, it’s still safe to have the flu vaccine, however you may wish
to reschedule your appointment if you are currently experiencing a high temperature
or acute illness on the day of the appointment. It will still be effective at helping to
For advice and information about the flu vaccination, visit www.nhs.uk/flujab
Where do I get vaccinated?
All staff are encouraged to have their jabs via their flu champion in the first instance. Flu champions will be out and about in wards, departments and community hospitals and will make themselves known to you.
From Monday 2 October to Friday 13 October, staff can also have their flu jab at drop-in clinics across the trust. You do not need to book an appointment.
Watch this space for further information.
How do I get a vaccine appointment?
There is no need to book an appointment to receive your vaccination, but you must provide your payroll number and your NHS number when you attend a drop-in clinic.
Will I need to bring anything with me when I come to the drop-in clinic?
When you get your jab, you’ll be asked to fill in a slip.
On the slip, you will be advised to add your:
- NHS number – If you don’t know it, you canâ¯find your NHS number onlineâ¯or on your NHS App.
- Payroll number – your payroll number can be found by logging in toâ¯ESRâ¯and is on your payslip as ‘assignment number’. If you are not paid by the trust (for example junior doctors), you can leave the payroll number blank but you must add your NHS number.
- Telephone number
- Personal details including your date of birth
How effective is the flu vaccine?
The flu vaccine is your best protection against the virus. It will not stop all flu viruses
but if you do get flu after vaccination, it’s likely that if you do still catch the flu the
disease will be milder and shorter-lived than it would otherwise have been. It takes
the immune response about two weeks to fully develop after vaccination.
Will the flu jab give me flu?
No. The injected vaccine used for adults does not contain any live viruses, so it cannot cause flu. Some people get a slightly raised temperature and aching muscles for a couple of days afterwards, and you may feel sore at the injection site.
Will the vaccine have side effects?
Like all medicines, vaccines can cause side effects. Most of these are mild and short term, lasting no longer than a week, and not everyone gets them.
Flu vaccines have a good safety record. All adult flu vaccines are given by injection
into the muscle of the upper arm.
Most side effects are mild and only last for a day or so, such as:
- slightly raised temperature
- muscle aches
- sore arm where the needle went in – this is more likely to happen with the vaccine for people aged 65 and over
Try these tips to help reduce the discomfort:
- continue to move your arm regularly
- take a painkiller, such as paracetamol or ibuprofen – some people, including those who are pregnant, should not take ibuprofen unless a doctor recommends it.
Will the side effects be worse if I have both vaccines at the same time?
People who receive both vaccines at the same time may be slightly more likely to experience at least one side effect when both vaccines are given together, although these are typically mild, short-lived reactions.
The vaccines are extremely safe and there is no evidence that giving both together is more likely to cause serious side effects.
Can I go back to work after having my vaccine?
Yes, you should be able to work as long as you feel well. If your arm is particularly sore, you may find heavy lifting difficult. If you feel unwell or very tired you should rest and avoid operating machinery or driving.
What do I do if I have had my vaccine(s) outside of the trust for example from my GP or the national booking service?
Please let us know by emailing [email protected]
Can I have my flu vaccine and COVID-19 booster at the same time?
The flu vaccine and the COVID-19 booster can be given on the same day and there are opportunities to have both vaccinations at the same time.
Is the NHS confident the vaccines are safe?
Yes – the MHRA, the official UK regulator authorising licensed use of medicines and vaccines by healthcare professionals, has said these vaccines are safe and highly effective, and we have full confidence in their expert judgement and processes.
Can I have the flu vaccine if I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?
JCVI advice recommends that you should have a flu vaccine if you are eligible. You should have the flu vaccine if you’re pregnant to help protect you and your baby. It’s safe to have the flu vaccine at any stage of pregnancy from the first few weeks up to your expected due date. Women who have had the flu vaccine while pregnant also pass some protection on to their babies, which lasts for the first few months of their lives. It’s safe for women who are breastfeeding to have the vaccine.
Is there anyone that shouldn’t get the flu vaccine?
There will be a small number of people where it is advised that you should not have a flu vaccine, for example if you have ever had a serious allergy to the vaccine, or any of its ingredients. If you are allergic to eggs or have a condition that weakens your immune system, you may not be able to have certain types of flu vaccine – check with your vaccinator. If you have a fever, the vaccination may be delayed until you are better.
Is the flu vaccine and COVID-19 booster mandatory for staff?
No, having the COVID-19 or flu vaccine is not compulsory for health and social care staff, but helps to provide important protection for these individuals and those they
come into contact with.
Local employers will be working hard to ensure all staff can
get the COVID and flu vaccines this autumn/winter, and we are confident that most
of our staff will choose to protect themselves and those around them by getting the