People eligible for the free flu jab are being urged to get vaccinated as soon as possible to help protect themselves against flu.

This winter, with both flu and Covid-19 in circulation, it is even more important that people at risk from flu get vaccinated. This comes after Public Health England found the risk of death more than doubled among people who became infected with both flu and Covid-19 at the same time earlier this year.

We have released a news article titled Hundreds more pupils get flu vaccinations that gives more information.

Getting the flu is horrible. It can cause:

  • a fever
  • a blocked nose
  • sore throat
  • aches
  • and tiredness.

In the most serious cases, it can lead to bronchitis and pneumonia.

The FREE nasal spray is the best defence children have against the flu. It's quick, safe and - because it is a spray rather than injection - painless too!

Hundreds more children have become Flu Fighters and will be joining the battle against influenza this winter as the free vaccination programme continues in Wolverhampton’s schools. For more information, please see our latest press release titled Pupils transformed into Flu Fighters to join winter battle

Who can have it?

The nasal spray is offered free to children in Reception, Year 1, Year 2, Year 3, Year 4, Year 5 and Year 7. Most children will receive the free nasal spray at their school. If your child misses this, they can receive their free nasal spray at special catch-up clinics. Further information on these clinics found by visiting schoolvaccination.uk, calling 01902 682922 or emailing vaccinationwolverhampton@evguk.co.uk.

The vaccine is also available to children aged two and three, and those over the age of 6 months with a long-term health condition.

For more information about the flu vaccine, please visit nhs.uk/child-flu or read Protecting Your Child Against Flu, and check out our Frequently Asked Questions.


Flu Fighters Versus Chilly, Achy and Snotty 

Read how our heroes Amy, Raj and Daniel became Flu Fighters to defeat the trio of evil invading aliens from the Planet Bogey in 2018’s free storybook. Get your copy from the download section.


Flu Fighters in… The Battle of Planet Bogey

Read how our fearless Flu Fighters get on against Lord Fever and his fiendish friends in 2019’s free storybook, The Battle of Planet Bogey! Get your copy from the download section.

Flu Fighters The Battle of Planet Bogey

Flu Fighters in Close Encounters of the Germed Kind

Read how the Flu Fighters fare as Lord Fever launches his biggest invasion yet in 2020's free story book, Close Encounters of the Germed Kind! Get your copy from the download section.

Flu Fighters 3 cover

 


Flu vaccination dates

School Dates
SCHOOL DATE STATUS
St Peter's Collegiate Church of England School (Yr 7) 19 January Confirmed
Catch up clinics

Please note that the Catch Up Clinics are by appointment only, please call 01902 200077 to make an appointment.

Place Date and Time Confirmed
Phoenix HC
Parkfield Road
WV4 6ED
9 January 2021
9am to 2:30pm

Yes

Christ The King
Pendeford Avenue
WV6 9EJ
11 January 2021
9am to 2pm
Yes
Ladies Walk
Priory Lane
DY3 3UA
13 January 2021
9am to 3pm
Yes
Room 7, Biz Space
Planetary Road
WV13 3SW
14 January 2021
10am to 2pm
Yes
Christ The King
Pendeford Avenue
WV6 9EJ
16 January 2021
9am to 2pm
Yes
Park Village Education Centre
Cannock Road
 
18 January 2021
9am to 2pm
Yes
Room 7, Biz Space
Planetary Road
WV13 3SW
20 January 2021
10am to 2pm
Yes
Park Village Education Centre
Cannock Road
 
23 January 2021
9am to 2pm
Yes
Phoenix HC
Parkfield Road
WV4 6ED
25 January 2021 No
Ashmore Park HC

 
27 January 2021 No

Frequently Asked Questions

Where will my child receive the vaccine?

Children in primary school will receive their vaccine in the school setting.

Children aged 2 and 3 on 31 August will receive their vaccine in the GP setting.

Your child’s School or GP will contact you about getting vaccinated before the winter.

Why are healthy children being offered flu vaccine?

Flu is a disease that spreads very rapidly, potentially causing widespread illness, especially in those who are already vulnerable because of their age or medical condition. So if children are vaccinated against flu they will not only benefit directly by being protected themselves, they will also reduce the spread of flu and help protect the whole population. In particular, they will help to protect those children and adults who cannot or do not have the vaccine.

Does my child have to have the nasal spray flu vaccine?

No. As with all immunisations, flu vaccinations for children are optional. However, this vaccine will help protect them from what can be an unpleasant illness, as well as stopping them spreading flu to vulnerable friends and relatives.

What vaccine will my child receive?

Most children will be offered the Fluenz nasal spray. This is a single spray squirted up each nostril. It is needle free, quick and painless.

Can’t my child have the injected flu vaccine instead of the nasal spray?

The nasal flu vaccine is more effective than the injected vaccine and is therefore the preferred option. Injected flu vaccines are only usually recommended as part of the programme for children and adults who are at high risk of the complications of flu.

Will the flu vaccine give my child flu?

No. The vaccine contains viruses that have been weakened to prevent them from causing flu.

Why is the Fluenz nasal spray vaccine being used?

The flu virus enters the body through the nose and mouth. From there it is transmitted to the throat and upper airways where it rapidly replicates and goes on to cause the symptoms of flu. Because Fluenz also enters the body through the nose it mimics the flu virus and results in a better immune response than an injected vaccine.

This means that, compared with injected and less active vaccines, Fluenz:

  • Is more effective
  • Provides protection for longer
  • May offer protection against slightly different types of flu virus
  • Is easier to give and more comfortable to have
How does the vaccine work?

The vaccine contains live but weakened flu viruses that do not cause flu in children. It will help your child build up immunity to flu in a similar way as natural infection, but without symptoms.

Because the main flu viruses change each year, a new nasal spray vaccine has to be given each year.

Does the nasal flu vaccine contain pork?

Yes, the vaccine contains a highly processed form of gelatine that is derived from pigs – porcine gelatine. This gelatine helps to keep the vaccine viruses stable to ensure it provides the best protection against flu.

Why is porcine gelatine used in vaccines?

Gelatine is used in a very wide range of medicines, including many capsules and some vaccines. Porcine gelatine is used in vaccines as a stabiliser – to ensure that the vaccine remains safe and effective during storage.

Vaccine manufacturers normally test a wide range of stabilisers and choose one that is stable, good quality and available in sufficient volume. Unlike the gelatine used in foods, the product used in vaccines is highly purified and broken down into very small molecules called peptides.

Why can’t vaccines be made with other stabilisers or other types of gelatine?

Developing a vaccine takes many years of laboratory testing and clinical studies to ensure that it is both safe and effective. Once the manufacturer has chosen the stabiliser for the vaccine, any change in this could require extensive laboratory and clinical studies to show that the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine has not been affected. Because of this, developing a new safe and effective vaccine with a different stabiliser may take several years or may never happen.

Are there any suitable alternatives to the nasal spray vaccine?

There are injectable flu vaccines that do not contain pork gelatine, but these are expected to be less effective than Fluenz Tetra® in children. They may also do less

to reduce the spread of flu in the community. These vaccines are usually recommended as part of the programme for children and adults who are at high risk of the complications of flu.

What is the view of the faith communities?

Public Health England (PHE) has consulted with the Kashrut and Medicines Information Service, who said: ‘It should be noted that according to Jewish laws, there is no problem with porcine or other animal derived ingredients in non-oral products. This includes vaccines, including those administered via the nose, injections, suppositories, creams and ointments.’

The Muslim Council of Britain position states ‘that vaccines containing porcine are not permitted in Islam unless lives are at risk and there are no alternatives. Muslims should not automatically refuse treatment. Health is paramount, anyone concerned about the use of gelatine in vaccines must consult a medical practitioner and make an informed decision.’

PHE acknowledges that there is diversity within the British Muslim and Jewish communities and they, and some other groups, may consider medicines and vaccines containing any porcine product to be forbidden. In these circumstances, it is likely that the individual would be unable to accept many pharmaceutical products unless there was no suitable alternative and/or the product was considered life-saving.

Where can I find out more information on the flu vaccine?

For more information on the flu vaccine for children click the following links:

 

For more information on the pork content of the vaccine click the following link:

13591