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FLU CAN LEAD TO SERIOUS ILLNESS FOR THOSE AT RISK
Dr. Eric Baijal, Director of Public Health Medicine has urged patients in the NHS Highland area to make an appointment with their GP practice to have an annual flu vaccination to protect them against the virus during the winter months.
Dr. Baijal said: "Those who are most at risk to the effects of flu are people over 65 and people of any age who have a long-term medical condition. Asthma, diabetes, lung, heart, liver and kidney disease, serious neurological conditions such as stroke and multiple sclerosis are all conditions that mean the patient is more likely to develop a serious illness as a result of catching flu. These people are the 'at risk' group and are therefore entitled to a free vaccination. Because the virus changes, it is essential to have a repeat jab every year.
For the rest of us who are generally in good health, flu is a nasty illness as it is much more severe than the common cold. It is also highly infectious and around 10 to 15% of the UK is affected every year.
I would urge people if they know a family member or a friend who falls into the 'at risk' category to encourage them to get their flu jab now."
Flu symptoms are:
It affects 10-15% of the population every year
Flu vaccines give 70-80% protection against infection with flu virus strains that closely match those in the vaccine
Flu vaccine cannot give you flu as it does not contain any live viruses.