Ribble Valley’s Nigel Evans joined fellow MPs and Peers who attended Westminster Flu Day – a flu vaccine clinic held in the House of Commons – to encourage their constituents to get this season’s flu vaccine in line with Government recommendations.
Last year 72.3% of people over 65 years and 47.7% in the at risk groups were vaccinated against flu in East Lancashire, compared with the national averages of 73.4% for the over-65s and 51.3% for those deemed “at risk”.
Mr Evans said: “Flu can be a very serious illness for certain groups of people. I would encourage all those over 65 or in one of the ‘at risk’ groups to visit their surgeries and get vaccinated.”
Dr Dan Poulter MP, Minister for Health, added: “The seasonal flu vaccination is important to help protect those people who are more susceptible to serious complications or even death from flu.”
The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) Vaccine Group is working hard with the Department of Health to understand how it can improve implementation of the seasonal flu programme in the at-risk groups and amongst pregnant women and healthcare professionals.
Westminster Flu Day is an established event in the Parliamentary calendar. It is sponsored by the ABPI Vaccine Group and supported by the Department of Health as a useful way to highlight the importance of flu vaccination.
MPs who would not be eligible for a free seasonal flu vaccination on the NHS made a £10 donation to the Disasters Emergency Committee, as £10 is the average cost of a private flu vaccination.