Dedicated health staff join the FLUperheroes to protect patients
Date published: 07 December 2017
Over 2,500 community health staff have rolled up their sleeves to protect local people from flu
Over 2,500 community health staff have rolled up their sleeves to protect local people from flu in Rochdale.
They have received their vaccine as part of Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust’s annual staff vaccination programme, which aims to protect patients, staff and loved ones.
Flu is highly infectious and can easily spread. For most people, it is an uncomfortable illness that can come on quite suddenly and severely. However, for vulnerable people, such as children, the elderly and those with long-term health conditions or a weakened immune system, flu can lead to severe infections, complications and even death.
Evidence shows that up to a quarter of healthcare professionals may become infected with flu, even during a mild season. Having the flu vaccine can help to stop the spread of flu, which is why Pennine Care offers a free vaccine to every single member of staff – regardless of level or role.
This year, Pennine Care has refreshed its awareness raising campaign and launched a new FLUperhero theme.
Health visitor Helen Campbell has had her vaccine. She said: “Flu can be spread so easily and can have devastating effects on people who are vulnerable or have a low immune system.
“This programme is amazing and, by vaccinating against the virus, I hope we are giving reassurance to our patients that they are at the heart of everything we do and that we care.”
Sarah Brynes is a Community Nurse based at Milnrow Clinic. She said: “The vaccine aims to protect the most vulnerable people in our communities from getting ill. By taking part in this annual programme we are standing together to fight flu and its effects.
“With so many drop-in clinics being held at various locations, it couldn’t be easier for people to get vaccinated. I hope everyone joins in the fight against flu and becomes a Pennine Care FLUperhero.”
Every year, dedicated staff members at Pennine Care volunteer to become flu champions and drive forward the campaign in their division or borough. This is great news for patients, who can be sure that staff are going the extra mile to keep themselves protected and patients safe this winter.
With many more flu clinics planned between now and Christmas, the number of Pennine Care FLUperheroes is set to rise.
A free flu vaccination is also available free of charge to members of the public who are in an ‘at risk’ group, such as those who are aged over 65, pregnant, or who have a long term condition. People should speak to their GP if they think they are eligible.
Further information about the flu vaccine, along with a wealth of tips for staying well this winter, is available at www.nhs.uk/staywell