GMB East Midlands Ambulance Service Branch

Flu Vaccine 2019

Winter is coming… (sorry to remind you) and with that, the flu season. The trust has today announced they are starting to roll out the 2019/20 flu vaccination.

Last year an amazing 75% of EMAS staff across the trust had the flu vaccination, this protected them, our patients and our families against the seasonal flu. This year if you have your flu vaccination you will be entered into a weekly draw to win a £50 voucher*.

GMB@EMAS would like to ask that this year we continue this high number of staff members taking the oppotunity to have the vaccination.

We all know that there are lots of conflicting information around regarding getting ill from having the vaccine, however… Continue reading below to find out the answers to some common myths about flu vaccinations.

The flu vaccine will give you the flu

The injected flu vaccine given to adults contains inactivated flu viruses, so it cannot give you flu. 

Your arm may feel a bit sore where you were injected, and some people get a slight temperature and aching muscles for a couple of days afterwards. Other reactions are very rare.

Flu cannot be treated with antibiotics

Flu is caused by viruses. Antibiotics only work against bacteria. You may be prescribed antiviral medicines to treat your flu. 

Antivirals do not cure flu, but they can make you less infectious to others and reduce the length of time you may be ill.

To be effective, antivirals have to be given within a day or 2 of your symptoms appearing. 

A bacterial infection may occur as a result of having the flu, in which case you may be given antibiotics.

I had the flu vaccine last year… do I need it again?

The viruses that cause flu can change every year, so you need a vaccination that matches the new viruses each year. 

The vaccine usually provides protection for the duration of that year’s flu season.

Last year’s flu shot won’t provide adequate protection from the flu this year

There are several reasons why you need to get a flu shot every year. First, your body’s immune response to the vaccine gradually declines, so an annual vaccine is needed to provide continuous protection. Second, flu viruses are constantly changing. Each year, the strains covered in the flu vaccine are reviewed and adjusted.


Fact Sources:
NHS
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash
* this voucher is issued by the Trust and nothing to do with GMB@EMAS.


Published - 30th September 2019

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