Private clinic the Harrow Health Care Centre has said that the introduction of flu vaccination for primary school children was a big step for the UK, but said that millions more people could still be exposed to the virus.
GPs based at the practice at the Clementine Churchill Hospital are urging more adults and teenagers to seek out a private flu vaccination ahead of this year’s flu season in the coming weeks.
It is thought that the extension of the flu vaccine to primary school children, which is being implemented for the first time this year, will play an important role in protecting more vulnerable adults.
The age group is a key carrier for the virus due to their susceptibility for contracting it and their close proximity to school friends and family. In fact, school aged children are often referred to as super spreaders. The change to public health policy will mean that 600,000 pupils aged 10 – 11 will receive a jab.
Dr Anup Mazumadar, a GP at Harrow Health Care Centre said: “Its fantastic news that Public Health England has recognised the risk posed by the flu and offered to extend the vaccination to this age group.
“A number of countries around the world offer a wider programme of vaccination than the UK already and this has a significant benefit on reducing cases in these countries and I am sure the UK will see similar results as well.
“However, we must not miss the fact that millions of patients each year go without the vaccine, exposing themselves to the risk of contracting the flu and passing it on to others.”
Dr Mazumadar said that this group included the majority of the UK’s workforce who were critical to the country’s economy. He is urging people to seek out private help to protect their health.
“People tend to underestimate the impact of the flu, but without proper treatment in can be a dangerous virus,” he added.
“For what is a relatively small cost, patients can help to ensure they are properly vaccinated, reducing their risk of getting ill and missing days at work.”
To find out more about Harrow Health Care Centre flu vaccination services, please visit www.harrowhealthcare.co.uk