Flu Vaccination – By Public Health Wales

Public Health Wales has asked Mam Cymru to share this article which contains useful information about the flu vaccination.

Dr Nia Allen is a GP on Anglesey – in the town that has one of the longest place names in the world, but fondly known locally as Llanfair PG. She has always been a strong advocate of flu vaccination, for herself and those she cares for, and with a third child on the way she is more aware than ever of its importance – not only to protect herself, but also her unborn baby.

“Influenza can be serious and I have the influenza (flu) vaccination every year as I believe, as a doctor, I have a duty to protect the health of the patients I see. The vaccine helps protect me from catching flu and also from spreading it to others. There is an added incentive this year, of course, as I am expecting my third child in February. I have seen the evidence and I know that influenza can be very serious during pregnancy for the woman and her unborn baby, and I want to give him, or her, the best possible start in life.”

Nia already has two sons who are four and six years old and she is glad that they are also eligible for the vaccination.

“I welcome the fact that children from two to eight years will be receiving the flu vaccination this season, as children are significant spreaders of germs. Giving the vaccine as a nasal spray to children also takes away the fear of having an injection – my children treat it as a bit of fun.”

As a member of the medical profession Nia has seen how ill people can be with influenza.

“Working in the hospital I have had first-hand experience of how serious influenza can be. Lots of people think that influenza is nothing more than a bad cold but it is much, much worse, especially if your immune system is already low due to pregnancy or a long term health condition.

“That is why I routinely check who should have a flu vaccine and ask those who I see with their medical or health concerns if they have had their flu jab. I always strongly encourage everyone who is eligible to have it as soon as possible. It’s a very small step, taking less than a few minutes and having this safe vaccine is the best protection we have, from a potentially serious illness.”

For more information on the Beat Flu campaign visit www.beatflu.org or follow on Facebook and Twitter – just search for beat flu.

Mam Cymru would like to thank Public Health Wales for this article.

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