Carers are being urged to make sure they are vaccinated against flu this winter – to protect themselves and the people they care for.

Anyone who receives Carer's Allowance, or who carers for an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if they fall ill, is eligible for a free vaccination from their GP or at many local pharmacies.

Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Adults and Wellbeing, said: "If you are a carer for someone who is ill, frail or disabled and you go down with flu or another bug, it’s not only unpleasant for you but it could affect your ability to look after the person you’re caring for. 

"That's why it’s good news that carers are eligible for the free flu vaccination once again this year. Remember, this includes people who provide unpaid care, for example to a family member, close friend or neighbour.

“The vaccine is quick, safe and effective and it will help protect you and the person you care for so, if you haven't had yours yet, please get it as soon as possible. You should let your GP or pharmacy know that you are a carer when making your appointment.

“In addition, outbreaks of flu often occur in health and social care settings where people are in close contact with each other, so we're encouraging frontline health and social care workers to make sure they have had their free flu vaccinations, too."

The flu vaccine is also offered free on the NHS to people who are 65 and over (including those who will be 65 by 31 March, 2024), people with certain health conditions or who are pregnant, people in long stay residential care, or people who live with someone who is more likely to get a severe infection due to a weakened immune system. 

Anyone who is not eligible for the free vaccine can still receive it for a small charge at selected pharmacies.

Councillor Jaspal added: “Even if you’ve had the vaccination before it’s important to get it on annual basis, because the type of virus in circulation changes every year, and the vaccine changes with it."

For more information, please visit Flu vaccine