CSP backs call for healthcare staff to have voluntary flu jab

Public Health England (PHE) has launched a campaign to encourage healthcare staff to receive a seasonal flu vaccination – to protect themselves, their families and their patients. 

A practitioner administering a vaccine to a patient

The CSP is supporting the Health and Social Care Workers Flu Immunisation Campaign, which aims to boost uptake of the jab among health and social care staff. 

Claire Sullivan, CSP director of employment relations, said: ‘We are strongly encouraging all healthcare staff to get a flu vaccine this autumn unless they have been advised against it for medical reasons. 

‘Immunisation for seasonal flu is an important part of keeping staff and patients safe and preventing transmission in the health and care sector.

Staff immunisation helps to protect family and friends too

The CSP strongly supports this voluntary programme, rather than mandatory vaccination, alongside robust infection control procedures. 

Flu and Covid-19: the risks of simultaneous circulation 

Alongside the launch of the new campaign, PHE is also warning about the risks of Covid-19 and flu co-circulating this winter. 

As a result, the government is emphasising that an effective, national flu immunisation programme is essential, to protect vulnerable ‘at risk’ groups and also to prevent the health and care system from becoming overwhelmed. 

‘The pressures of restarting suspended services, meeting Covid rehabilitation needs and the possibility of further local spikes or a second national wave of Covid mean that winter pressures on the NHS are likely to be particularly acute this year,’ Ms Sullivan said. 

Protecting shielding patients 

As part of their Covid-19 response, PHE also plans to offer flu vaccinations to all individuals who are living with or in contact with people on the NHS Shielded Patient List

And the Department of Health and Social Care are currently exploring ways to expand the workforce that is able to administer flu vaccinations. 

Resources to support the new campaign, including posters, leaflets and information sheets, are available to download here 

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