As the new term gets underway in Midlothian today, parents of primary school children in the NHS Lothian area are being urged to act now to get their children ready to fight flu this winter.
Following last year’s bad flu season, health professionals have highlighted the benefits of getting children vaccinated early ahead of winter hitting.
Flu vaccination consent forms will be arriving home in school bags this week as the term gets underway, which parents need to return within the seven-day window if they wish their child to be vaccinated.
To date, more than 1.6 million doses of the nasal vaccine have been given to 2-11 year olds in Scotland, and the vaccine will be offered to 400,000 primary aged children this year as part of the Scottish childhood immunisation programme.
The Deputy Chief Medical Officer for Scotland urged parents to consider getting their child vaccinated, not only to protect them, but to help stop the spread of the virus to others.
Dr Gregor Smith, Deputy Chief Medical Officer for Scotland said: “Incidences of flu in Scotland rose last winter, which is why we’re advising people to get ready to fight flu ahead of winter hitting.
“Flu can be serious, and can result in even healthy children being hospitalised. The vaccine remains the best way to protect your child against flu and its complications, and helps protect those around them who may be vulnerable to flu.
“Primary school children cannot receive their flu vaccination if a signed consent form isn’t returned, so I’d encourage parents to look out for it.
“By everyone playing their part, we can stop the spread of the virus this winter.”
For further information, visit: https://www.nhsinform.scot/campaigns/get-ready-for-flu