Stay warm and well, get Flusafe and keep bugs at bay!
Local NHS and council leaders are again urging people to think about how cold weather and winter viruses may affect you, your family and neighbours.
As we would expect at this time of year the latest Public Health England data shows that more people are visiting GPs with flu symptoms along with an increase in people admitted to hospitals with the flu. These are rates are higher than in previous years.
The vaccine is the best defence against the spread of flu and it isn’t too late to get vaccinated. For protection against flu, those eligible are reminded to please ensure they don’t delay and take up their offer of a free flu vaccination. In particular, children and adults with chronic health conditions, carers and pregnant women have lower uptake so far this year, and are among our most vulnerable groups.
Eligible people include:
- children (from the age of 6 months) and adults with a chronic health condition
- pregnant women
- everyone aged 65 and over (including those becoming 65 by March 31 this year)
- health and social care professionals providing direct personal care
In addition, school age children (in Reception and Years 1- 4) are given a nasal spray vaccination. If your child missed their vaccination they should be invited to attend additional clinics being put on by the school immunisation service – please do get in contact.
It is not too late to get your vaccine, contact your GP, Pharmacy or midwife to book it in. If you are a health or social care professional providing direct personal care, please talk to your employer.
Those not entitled to a free flu vaccine can still protect themselves. The flu jab is available from pharmacies to purchase.
Preventing spread of flu and tummy bugs
People suffering with flu-like symptoms should catch coughs or sneezes in tissues and bin them immediately, wash their hands regularly with soap and warm water and frequently clean regularly used surfaces to stop spread of flu.
To prevent the spread of tummy bugs people are reminded to wash hands and clean surfaces frequently if someone within the household is unwell and allow until 48 hours after you last had symptoms before returning to work or school.
Avoid having unnecessary contact with other people if you or they are presenting symptoms of flu. Symptoms include: coughs, runny nose, fever, sore throat, fatigue, aches and pains.
Anyone concerned about their symptoms should stay at home and contact their GP, or call NHS 111, to seek further advice.
Keep warm and well
Cold weather can lead to serious health problems and can kill. Older people, those with chronic health conditions and people who have a disability, are particularly at risk during the cold weather.
The council is encouraging people to be good neighbours, to check in on friends, relatives and those nearby who may be vulnerable to the cold and make sure they have enough food and medications when the weather gets colder.
Everyone is advised to keep warm and healthy by keeping rooms heated to at least 18oC throughout the day and night and to wear suitable clothing – several thin layers is better than one thick layer.
For anyone living in Warwickshire who needs advice and is worried about keeping their home warm, there is a free service, run by Act on Energy. The service can also help with fuel bills and benefits advice entitlements, including whether you are eligible for heating and insulation measures, so call 0800 988 2881 or see information leaflet.
Warwickshire fire and rescue service also offer free safe and well visits to help you stay safe and reduce the risk of fire in your home warwickshire.gov.uk/safeandwellvisit
Read the press release.