NHS advice on swine flu jab

NHS Devon is urging people to take up the offer of a swine flu vaccination, saying protection is important even though the outbreak is subsiding in England. Health leaders say that about 80 per cent of all influenza cases worldwide are being caused by

NHS Devon is urging people to take up the offer of a swine flu vaccination, saying protection is important even though the outbreak is subsiding in England.

Health leaders say that about 80 per cent of all influenza cases worldwide are being caused by the H1N1 swine flu strain, so it is still very much the dominant flu - and could be back here later this year.

Dr Virginia Pearson, director of public health at NHS Devon, said there was no reason for anyone to put themselves at risk.

"Levels of pandemic flu are currently very low, meaning the second wave of infection is virtually over," she said.


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"It's important to remember that although swine flu has not been a severe illness for most people, some children and younger adults have developed serious complications. We have seen some very unwell people in our hospitals, and across the country some otherwise healthy people have died.

"When the virus returns in the 2010 flu season, those who develop complications or die, will be doing so from a disease that they could have protected themselves against with a single jab."

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Anyone in Devon who is eligible for a swine flu vaccination and has not yet had one is strongly advised to take up the offer by contacting their GP.

Family doctors are currently vaccinating children aged from six months to five years, but anyone else in the higher-risk groups is urged to get their jab, too.

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