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Cleobury Mortimer MP urges constituents to get flu jabs
6:10am Wednesday 30th October 2013 in Local
CLEOBURY Mortimer’s MP joined other MPs and Peers for 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, 73.9 per cent of people aged over 65 and 55 per cent in the “at risk” groups were vaccinated against flu in Shropshire, compared with national averages of 73.4 per cent for the over-65s and 51.3 per cent for those at risk.
Conservative Philip Dunne, member for Ludlow, said: “Flu can be a very serious illness, especially for certain groups of people, so I strongly encourage all those over 65 and anyone in an at risk group to visit their GP surgeries and get vaccinated this autumn.”
Dr Dan Poulter MP, Minister for Health, added “The seasonal flu vaccination is important to help protect those people who are more susceptible to serious complications or even death from flu.”
The Department of Health wants to improve the uptake rates for those people under 65 years of age with clinical conditions which put them more at risk from the effects of flu. That currently stands at 51.3 per cent and the Department hopes to increase it to 75 per cent.
Uptake among pregnant women in 2012/13 was only 40.3 per cent and among healthcare workers the uptake was only 45.6 per cent.
The ABPI Vaccine Group is working with the Department of Health to understand how to improve implementation of the seasonal flu programme in the at-risk groups and among pregnant women and healthcare professionals.
Westminster Flu Day is an established event in the Parliamentary calendar. It is sponsored by the ABPI Vaccine Group and is supported by the Department of Health as a way to highlight the importance of flu vaccination.
MPs who would not be eligible for a free seasonal flu vaccination on the NHS made a £10 donation to the Disasters Emergency Committee - £10 is equivalent to the average cost of a private vaccination.
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