Flu (influenza) is a highly infectious illness caused by the flu virus. It spreads rapidly through small droplets coughed or sneezed into the air by an infected person.
Flu Vaccines help protect people against flu. However, the virus changes and protection tends to wear off. That’s why we need to give you a slightly different vaccine each year. The flu jab season generally lasts from October right through to March, but the vaccination is most effective when given early.
Flu vaccinations are offered to people at high risk of developing serious complications if they catch flu, most of which are listed below. Doctors can offer flu jabs to anyone if they feel a sound case can be made.
If you are not sure if you need one, ask.
Seasonal flu vaccinations:
Invited to attend:
Over 65 years, or 6 months and older with:
- chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and bronchiectasis
- Lung fibrosis and scarring conditions
- children who have been admitted to hospital with a chest infection before
- heart disease
- stroke and transient ischaemic attacks (TIAs)
- chronic kidney disease
- chronic liver disease
- patients with low immunity, including those on immune suppressant drugs, as for rheumatoid arthritis or Crohn’s disease, or cancer chemotherapy, absent spleen, HIV infection
- pregnant women
- those in long term residential care
- unpaid carers
How do I get my flu vaccination?
Letters are sent out to everyone in the high risk groups and these patients are invited to attend one of several dedicated flu surgeries.
If you need to see the doctor or nurse for any other reason, we are happy to give you your vaccination opportunistically – just ask.
If you are not in a high risk group, but would like a flu vaccination, think about buying one from one of the many supermarkets who now offer them for less than £10.
“Fluenza” nasal spray
Invited to attend:
- children aged 2 to 5 years who do not attend school
How do I get my child vaccinated?
You will receive a letter from the health surgery advising you when to contact us on 0141 531 8811. Your child will then be offered an appointment at a series of dedicated flu clinics to be held by the practice from October onwards.
Click here for more information about Fluenza nasal spray vaccination
Protects against infections caused by a bacterial germ called Streptococcus pneumoniae. It can cause:
- chest infection
- blood poisoning
- meningitis (brain infection)
- children under 2
- adults over 65
- children and adults with certain chronic (long-term) health conditions, such as a serious heart or kidney disease
How do I get my vaccination?
Lots of the same people who need a flu jab also need a pneumococcal jab. However, you only need the pneumococcal vaccine once. Your practice nurse or doctor will usually check whether you have received the vaccination when you attend for flu vaccination and will ask you if you wish to have it at the same time.
Click here for more information on pneumococcal vaccination
Whooping cough (pertussis) vaccination
Whooping cough is a serious disease, caused by a germ called Bordetella pertussis, that can lead to chest infection, brain damage and even death. Young babies are particularly at risk because they aren’t immunised until they are 2 months old. So we try and get pregnant mums to have a vaccination and pass their immunity onto their unborn baby through the bloodstream.
At risk group:
- young babies and children
- pregnant mothers – most effective between 28 and 32 weeks’ gestation
Click here for more information on whooping cough immunisation
Shingles (Varicella zoster) vaccination
Shingles is caused by the chickenpox virus. After the illness has gone, the virus remains dormant (inactive) in the nerves and can sometimes reactivate causing shingles. The rash looks like chickenpox but is limited to a small area. Attacks often occur at times of stress or illness. You can’t catch shingles from anyone else, it is a reactivation of your own past infection. However, if you have shingles blisters, the virus in the fluid can infect someone who has not had chickenpox (usually a child) and they may develop chickenpox instead. A on-off vaccine is now offered to:
- people age 70, 78 or 79 on the 1st Sept 2014
Please note that you are encouraged to attend for vaccination, even if you have had shingles before.
The shingles vaccination can be given at the same time as a flu vaccine.
How do I get my shingles vaccination?
Please contact the surgery on 0141 531 8811 for further information.
Click here for further information on the shingles vaccination
Hepatitis B Vaccination
Hepatitis vaccination is not routinely given in the UK, If you require to have this vaccination for work purposes, patients should seek advice from their employer. Students requesting Hepatitis B immunisation are advised to contact the occupational Health Department at their University for their vaccination. If the vaccine is required for travel outwith the UK please discuss this at our travel clinic.
A vaccination to protect against tetanus is given as part of the NHS childhood vaccination programme.
The full course of the tetanus vaccination consists of five doses. The first three doses are given during early childhood. This is followed by two booster doses. The first booster dose is given at around four years of age. The second one is given 10 years later. After the full course, you should have lifelong immunity against tetanus. However, if you or your child has a deep wound it is best to get medical advice.
If you are not sure whether you have had the full course, for example because you were born in another country, contact your GP for advice.
Meningitis C Vaccination
Most students have already been immunised. If not, you can be immunised against meningococcal infection, which can cause meningitis (brain injection) and septicaemia (blood poisoning).
International students may not have been immunised and we can provide this service. If you require immunisation please call the practice appointment line on 0141 531 8811 and ask for a routine appointment with our practice nurse.
For further advice please call the National Meningitis Trust on 0845 6000 800, or Freephone the Meningitis Research Foundation on 080 8800 3344.
The HPV Vaccine for girls aged 12 &13
The HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccine is designed to protect against the two types of HPV that can cause 70% of the cases of cervical cancer. It does not protect you against all other types, so you will still need to start going for regular cervical screening when you are 20 years of age.
It is important that you get this protection early enough for it to be effective and the best time for that is in your early teenage years. The vaccine won’t protect you against other sexually transmitted infections. You will need three injections over a period of six months to get the best protection. You will be informed when your immunisation is due.
Call the free NHS helpline on 0800 22 44 88 (Textphone 18001 22 44 88).
To obtain your vaccination history, please submit a request in writing to reception staff.
Please allow at least three working days before collection.
There may be a charge for this service; please ask at reception