21 December 2016
Islanders who fall within the ‘at risk’ category have been urged to arrange a flu vaccination injection from their GP.
Significant levels of flu are circulating in Jersey currently, and this has contributed to a shortage of available beds at the General Hospital during the past fortnight. This has led to the appeal from Island GPs and the Health and Social Services Department (HSSD) for those eligible to ensure they are vaccinated as soon as possible.
Those deemed to be at risk are
- Islanders aged 65 and over
- pregnant women
- those aged six months and over who have underlying health conditions including immunosuppression due to disease or treatment, diabetes or chronic disease of the respiratory tract, heart, liver, kidneys or nervous system
Dr Ivan Muscat, Consultant Microbiologist at the General Hospital, said “The evidence available this season indicates that the 2016/17 vaccine provides good levels of protection against the strains of flu that have been circulating in Jersey and other parts of the Northern Hemisphere.
“GP surgeries still have some supply of vaccine available, and I would urge those who fall into the designated ‘at risk’ categories to arrange to get vaccinated. However supplies of the vaccine are now limited, and it will be administered to those eligible on a first-come-first-served basis.”
Islanders who are experiencing flu-like symptoms have been reminded not to attend the Emergency Department at the General Hospital except in cases of genuine emergency. Community pharmacists and GP surgeries are able to provide advice for those who may have flu, and at evenings and weekends it is possible to contact the out-of-hours GP service via the Hospital switchboard (01534 442000). Those needing to use the out-of-hours service do not need to pay at the time, as invoices are sent to patients via their GP practice.