It is not too late to get the flu vaccination is the message from the NHS in Yorkshire and the Humber.
With illnesses on the rise as winter continues people who have not yet had their vaccination are being urged to protect themselves and those around them.
Medical Director for Yorkshire and the Humber, Paul Twomey, said: “It’s not too late to get your flu vaccination.
“Flu can be very serious and the flu jab can protect you and your family and help ease the pressure on our A&E departments, which are very busy at this time of year.
“You can book an appointment to get the vaccine at your GP or local pharmacy and the flu nasal spray vaccination is the simplest way to protect children.”
Those with flu-like symptoms are also being asked not to visit hospitals as they may put vulnerable people at risk of getting flu.
In December 2017 there were 61 admissions of confirmed influenza cases to intensive care or high dependency units across England with seven flu-related deaths recorded.
However less than half of pregnant woman and those in ‘at risk’ groups have had their vaccination with 70 per cent of over 65s having had theirs.
Some people are more vulnerable to becoming poorly in the colder months, including those with long term conditions like diabetes and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Anyone in this group is more likely to have potentially serious complications from flu and the vaccine offers the best protection.
Dr Twomey added: “The best protection against seasonal flu is the flu vaccination which is available free of charge to people aged 65 or over and people with long-term conditions – I urge people to get the vaccine if they have not already had it.
To find out if you are eligible for a free flu vaccination visit www.nhs.uk