As we enter the winter months, it is so important to support your immune system. The flu viruses that are circulating change every year. This is why you need to get a new vaccine each year. There are many ways to strengthen your immune system such as a healthy diet & multivitamins, the Flu Vaccine can further protect you & your loved ones

WHAT IS FLU? (INFLUENZA)

Influenza is a highly contagious acute respiratory illness caused by the influenza virus. Influenza affects people of all ages. Outbreaks of influenza occur almost every year, usually in winter, that is why it is known as seasonal flu.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF FLU?

  • Fever or feeling feverish/chills
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headaches
  • Tiredness
  • In some cases vomiting and diarrhoea

WHO SHOULD AND SHOULDN’T GET THE FLU VACCINE?]

Anyone 6 months and older can get the flu vaccine at McDaids. Certain ‘at risk’ groups more likely to experience complications of the flu if they were to catch it, therefore it is highly recommended that anyone who falls into one of these groups should get the vaccine every year.

SHOULD:

Vaccination is highly advised for:

  • People aged 65 and over
  • People with a long-term medical condition such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, asthma, COPD, diabetes, heart, kidney, liver, lung or neurological disease.
  • People with impaired immune system due to disease or treatment.
  • People with a BMI over 40
  • People with Down’s syndrome
  • Pregnant women (can be given at any stage during pregnancy)
  • Healthcare workers
  • Nursing home residents.
  • Anyone in a household with contact to at-risk person
  • Those at close contact with pigs, poultry and water fowl

SHOULD NOT:

You should not get the flu vaccine if:

  • You have had a severe allergic (anaphylaxis) reaction to a previous vaccination
  • You are taking medicines called combination checkpoint inhibitors
  • Your vaccination should be re-scheduled if you are feeling unwell or have an acute illness with a temperature greater than 38°C

HOW MUCH DOES THE FLU VACCINE COST?

Anyone 6 months and older can get the flu vaccine. Certain ‘at risk’ groups more likely to experience complications of the flu if they were to catch it, therefore it is highly recommended that anyone who falls into one of these groups should get the vaccine each year.

These ‘at risk’ groups are entitled to receive the vaccine free of charge:

  • People aged 65 years and over
  • Pregnant women
  • People (adults and children) with long-term medical conditions such as
    •  Diabetes
    • Heart disease,
    • Liver disease
    • Kidney disease
    • Cancer
    • Chronic lung disease including COPD
    • Neurological diseases
  • People whose immune system is impaired due to disease or treatment, including cancer patients
  • Persons who are obese who have a body mass index (BMI) of over 40
  • People with Down syndrome
  • Residents of nursing homes and other long-stay institutions
  • Healthcare workers
  • Carers and household contacts of people at medical risk of the complications of flu
  • People with regular close contact with poultry, water fowl or pigs

In addition to the above, this year the government have announced that the flu vaccine will be available to all children aged 2-12 years free of charge. For children in this age group, a nasal spray vaccine will be given.

For anyone who does not fall into one of the above categories, a charge will apply.

  • If you are not in any of the at-risk categories and wish to avail of the vaccine, you will pay €24.95.

HOW DOES THE FLU VACCINE WORK?

The flu vaccine uses an inactive strain of Flu virus to help your immune system produce antibodies to fight the influenza virus. If you have been vaccinated and you come into contact with the virus, these antibodies will attack it and stop you from getting sick.

BEST TIME TO GET VACCINATED

September and October are the best times to get vaccinated. The vaccine is made available from mid September until April.

WHAT CAN I EXPECT AFTER VACCINATION?

The most common side effects will be mild and may include:

  • Soreness
  • Redness
  • Swelling at injection site

Some people may also expect:

  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Aches
  • Tiredness

This is not flu and will pass in a day or so.


HOW TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT

To make an appointment for the Flu Vaccine, please contact us on:

Telephone:

Lisnaskea 048 677 21255

Roslea 048 677 51800

Clones 047 51094

Cavan 049 436 1454

Kilnaleck 049 437 4929

Granard 043 668 7015

Mullingar 044 934 0500

Arvagh 049 432 8550

Leixlip 01 601 4625

COVID-19

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE FLU AND COVID-19?

Influenza and COVID-19 are both contagious respiratory illnesses, but they are caused by different viruses. COVID-19 is caused by infection with a new coronavirus (called SARS-CoV-2) and flu is caused by infection with influenza viruses.

The symptoms of influenza and COVID-19 are similar so it could be hard to tell the difference between them based on symptoms. Testing may be needed to help confirm a diagnosis.

The flu vaccine will not protect you against COVID-19. There is no vaccine currently available to protect against COVID-19.

Please note, vaccinations for people with suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19 must be put on hold until they are no longer self isolating and it has been over 14 days since they first developed symptoms.

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