Get protected, get a flu jab

Andrew Beardshall
Andrew Beardshall

7.6 million workdays are lost to influenza every year at a cost of £1.36 billion to the UK economy.

As we head into the winter months, flu beces more prevalent and, since it is highly infectious, everyone is at risk. We caught up with Andrew Beardshall who heads up Weldricks’ flu vaccination service to find out Flu is highly infectious and still kills 1000s of people every year.

Symptoms can come on very quickly and include high fever, aching muscles, shivers and extreme lethargy – if you’re still walking about and not confined to your bed you definitely don’t have flu!

Flu symptoms will peak after a few days and, although most people recover within 7 to 10 days, the virus can be much more serious and cause major complications in certain vulnerable people. These include people aged 65 and over, those with chronic respiratory illnesses such as asthma, chronic heart, liver, kidney or neurological disease, diabetes, low immunity, pregnant women and carers.

Based on clinical judgment, we can administer the flu vaccine to people aged 18 and over in these target groups, free of charge on the NHS, at 36 of our local pharmacies in South Yorkshire often without an appointment. Many of our branches are open six days a week and have extended opening hours so people can pop in after work or at weekends making it really convenient to get a jab.

Even if you’re not in the ‘at risk ‘target group and you’re fit and healthy we can provide the vaccination for £11.98 Working alongside GPs and district nurses, we can also visit people in their own s to give them a vaccination and carry out a medicines review at the same time. And every year, I visit businesses and organisations across the region to accinate employees. Last year, I gave all of the Doncaster Knights players the vaccination to ensure they stayed flu-free for the season.Contrary to popular belief, the flu jab doesn’t give you the flu but it does take between 7 and 14 days for a person to become immunised. The vaccination itself doesn’t hurt and is delivered in the upper arm. Some people experience a dull ache in their arm and a slight temperature for a few days but that soon wears off and is certainly preferable to contracting the virus!”