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Extension of the seasonal flu immunisation

Published: 17th November 2017

Dear Colleagues

Extension of the seasonal flu immunisation

Following our letter dated 8 November 2017 [Publications Gateway reference
07359], we wanted to update you that social care workers that offer direct patient/client care, working in England, are now eligible for free vaccination as part of the extension to the seasonal flu immunisation programme in 2017/18:

Which staff are eligible under the extension to this programme? Health and social care staff, employed by a registered residential care/nursing home or registered domiciliary care provider, who are directly involved in the care of vulnerable patients/clients who are at increased risk from exposure to influenza, meaning those patients/clients in a clinical risk group or aged 65 years and over.

Where can eligible staff get their vaccination?
Most community pharmacies and many GP practices will provide the vaccinations. We recommend that staff contact their community pharmacy or GP practice to check they are providing the service, before attending. For GP practices, this has to be the member of staff’s registered practice.

What ID should staff take to their pharmacy/GP to be vaccinated?
Eligible staff will need to take appropriate ID which shows their name and their employer such as an ID badge, letter from their employer or a recent pay slip.

The extension to this programme is designed to complement, not replace, existing immunisation schemes already in place across health and social care. Some employers will already have a vaccination scheme in place and some staff will already be eligible for free vaccination by being in one of the defined risk groups set out on NHS Choices. We encourage all eligible staff to take up this offer and help protect themselves and their patients.

Employers can access a range of resources as part of the flu fighter campaign:

Further information is available on the NHS England website:

Any queries can be directed to NHS England at

Yours faithfully
Alex Morton
Director of Commissioning System Change & Public Health Commissioning

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