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Hartlebury's MP takes jab to promote flu vaccinations
11:40am Friday 2nd November 2012 in Local
HARTLEBURY’S MP was among a group of elected members and Peers attending Westminster Flu Day, a flu vaccine clinic held in the House of Commons to encourage their constituents to get this season’s flu vaccine.
Last year, 75 per cent of people aged over 65 and 54 per cent in “at risk” groups were vaccinated against flu in Worcestershire compared with the national averages of 74 per cent for the over-65s and 51.6 per cent for those at risk.
After receiving a flu jab, Conservative Peter Luff, who represents Mid Worcestershire at Westminster, said: “The seasonal flu vaccination is important to help protect those people who are more susceptible to serious complications - or even death - from flu.
“We’re not doing badly in the county compared to national averages but we could do much better. I urge all those that are over the age of 65 or are in one of the at risk groups to visit their surgeries and get vaccinated.”
As he is not in an at risk group, at the suggestion of the organisers Mr Luff made a charitable donation to the Disasters Emergency Committee equivalent to the cost of the jab.
Westminster Flu Day, an established event in the Parliamentary calendar, is sponsored by the UK Vaccine Industry Group (UVIG) and supported by the Department of Health to highlight the importance of flu vaccination.
The Department of Health wants to improve the uptake rates for people under 65 with clinical conditions which put them more at risk from the effects of flu.
That currently stands at 51.6 per cent and the Department hopes to increase it to 70 per cent. Uptake among pregnant women in 2011/12 was only 27.4 per cent.