The U.K. government is planning the largest seasonal flu vaccination campaign in history | Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP via Getty ImagesWinter is coming, and with it, a potentially devastating combination for the U.K.’s health service: Rising coronavirus cases and a population that’s less protected from the flu. At the same time, the government is facing another challenge as it plans the largest seasonal flu vaccination campaign in history. From September on, the government announced today, 35 million people will be eligible to receive the seasonal flu vaccine, including older children — a group that wasn’t offered the vaccine in 2020. The campaign will coincide with plans to offer a third coronavirus vaccine dose to those most vulnerable to COVID-19 — a group that often overlaps with those prioritized for the flu jab. The booster coronavirus vaccine campaign envisions millions of people being offered a third jab to ensure they “continue to have the protection they need ahead of the winter and against new variants,” said the government in a statement.
Related:SKY - Flu jab to be offered to 35 million people including secondary school pupils, amid warning of 'challenging winter'
More than 35 million people, including secondary school pupils, will be offered a free flu vaccine this winter under plans announced by the government. Announcing the winter plan, Health Secretary Sajid Javid encouraged all those eligible for a flu jab to come forward. "The flu vaccine is safe, effective and protects millions of people each year from what can be a devastating illness," she said. "Last winter, flu activity was extremely low, but this is no reason for complacency as it means less people have built up a defence against the virus. And Dr Nikita Kanani, NHS medical director for primary care, said getting your flu jab could "help save your life".