Flu Vaccinations




Flu vaccinations will be available from 8th September 2021.

If you are eligible then please call us on 0203 487 0200 to book an appointment to get the flu vaccination.

Image of a Vaccination occuring

Eligible patients

  • Those aged 6 months to under 50 years in clinical risk groups  
  • Pregnant women  
  • Children aged 2 and 3 on 31 August 2020  
  • Those aged 50 years and over  
  • Those in long-stay residential care homes  
  • Carers  
  • Close contacts of immunocompromised individuals  
  • Frontline health and social care staff

Flu FAQs  

How does Covid affect flu?  

This year, more than ever, it’s really important that everyone who is eligible gets the flu vaccination. There are two key reasons for this:

  1. Flu is a serious illness. We want to reduce the number of people treated for it this year to free up space and resources within the NHS in case there is a second wave of hospital admissions related to coronavirus. By getting your flu jab, you are doing your bit to protect the NHS.  
  2. If you are unwell with symptoms of flu or coronavirus, but you have been vaccinated against flu, it is unlikely that you will have flu, and your GP will be able to advise you accordingly. 

Does the flu vaccine provide protection from coronavirus?  

No. The vaccine purely provides protection against seasonal flu. Research into a vaccine for Covid-19 is ongoing and totally separate to the annual flu vaccine.


I have a healthy lifestyle and don’t often get colds or feel ill - what are the benefits for me?  

Getting the annual flu vaccine is a safe, effective way to prevent the flu. The vaccine causes your body to develop antibodies to several strains of the influenza virus. These antibodies help protect your body against infection.

This year, more than ever, we are urging everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated against flu, to help protect the NHS as we continue to battle the coronavirus pandemic.


I had the vaccine last year - why do I need it again?  

It’s important to get the flu jab every year. Flu viruses evolve quickly, so last year’s vaccine may not protect you from this year’s flu.


Is it safe to have the flu vaccine at a ‘pop-up’ clinic, rather than my own GP surgery?  

Yes - the vaccine will be given by fully trained, medical practitioners. However, if you have any concerns, please contact your GP.


Are there any side effects?  

Most people don't experience any adverse effects, however the most common side effects are general aches and pains, a rash at the injection site and feeling tired. These will usually go away within a day or two.

Other side effects are very rare. Learn more about any possible side effects of the flu jab.


Does the vaccine give you the flu?  

No. There is a widely-held perception that having the flu vaccine can give you a mild form of flu. This is just a myth. The injected flu vaccine cannot cause flu, because there are no active viruses in the vaccine. Some people may get a mild high temperature and slight muscle aches for a day or so. Other side effects are extremely rare.


I’m concerned about entering a GP practice - will it be Covid-safe?  

GP surgeries are safe. During the current coronavirus pandemic, surgery staff have been working hard to ensure that they can provide services, care and advice to you safely. To keep you safe, staff are; Ensuring social distancing in line with government guidance, colleagues are wearing PPE, regular cleaning and disinfection of all areas is taking place.


Are the vaccine’s ingredients safe?  

Yes. Like any vaccine, extensive testing is carried out before it is made available for patients. A full list of ingredients is available online.


Is the vaccine halal/kosher?  

The adult flu vaccination is both halal and kosher. The children’s nasal spray vaccine has been approved as kosher by Rabbi Abraham Adler from the Kashrus and Medicines Information Service, who has advised the Government on kashrut issues. The Muslim Council of Britain has advice available on their webesite. If you have any questions please contact your GP or pharmacist who will be happy to discuss your options.


Why is the flu vaccine important?  

Influenza - flu - is a potentially serious disease that can lead to hospitalisation and sometimes even death. Every flu season is different, and influenza infection can affect people differently, but millions of people get the flu every year.

An annual, seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to help protect against flu. This year that is more important than ever. Coronavirus hasn’t gone away, and the NHS is preparing for its busiest ever winter. We need to do everything we can to protect the NHS and make sure its resources - including hospital beds - are not unnecessarily stretched.

If everyone who is eligible gets the flu vaccine, fewer people will get the flu, giving the NHS more time and space to look after other patients across Hackney and the City.


How effective is the flu vaccine?  

The flu vaccine is the best protection we have against an unpredictable virus that can cause unpleasant illness in children and severe illness and death among at-risk groups, including older people, pregnant women and people with an underlying physical health condition.

Studies have shown that the flu vaccine will help prevent you getting the flu. It will not stop all flu viruses and the level of protection may vary, so it's not a 100% guarantee that you'll be flu-free. But if you do get flu after vaccination, it's likely to be milder and shorter-lived than it would otherwise have been.


Should my child be vaccinated against flu?  

Children are known to be super carriers of flu so it is very important to get them immunised. Children are immunised using a nasal spray.

If your child is aged two to three, please get the flu vaccine at your GP. If your child is at school, the school will write to you to ask for your permission for your child to be vaccinated at school. It is very important that you return this form.


How quickly does the flu jab take effect?  

It can take between two and three weeks to become fully effective.


Do I need to inform my GP if I get vaccinated at work or at a pharmacy?  

It's important that you inform your GP of your flu vaccination. Your pharmacist or in work nurse can tell you the name of the flu vaccination you receive.


I had the flu jab last year but still caught flu. Why?  

The flu vaccination is the best protection against the most common strains of flu. However the vaccination is not protection against all the different viruses which can produce flu-like symptoms. Getting vaccinated significantly reduces your chances of getting flu. Also, as the flu vaccination takes up to two weeks to become fully effective, it is still possible to be affected by flu during this time.

Published: Sep 1, 2021