Flu jab: Eligible groups in UK set to be 'expanded' reveals expert
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Flu is especially common during the winter. With flu cases on the rise during the period between December to March, the NHS and pharmacies are offering annual flu jabs. Those eligible for their Covid booster are also being invited for their top-up or can visit walk-in centres. A pharmacist and a new study share the same verdict on whether it’s safe to get both of these jabs at the same time.
Pharmacist Phil Day from Pharmacy2U said: “It is safe to administer both injections together; they will usually be given in different arms.
“Clinical trials have shown that there is no reduction in the immune response to either vaccine when they are given at the same time.”
A new study also confirms that people can indeed get their flu jab and COVID-19 vaccine at the same time.
This study, led by the University of Bristol, found that side effects were either mild or moderate when looking at three flu vaccines and Pfizer or AstraZeneca.
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Even though some people experienced more side effects when administered certain combinations of flu jabs and Covid vaccines, overall, the side effects were mild to moderate.
The most common ones reported were a pain in the place of injection, temporary tiredness, headache and muscle pain.
The shots in the clinical trial were given on the same day, but in opposite arms.
The participants were divided into age groups of those under 65 and those over 65.
One group of participants had a Covid vaccine and a flu jab during their first visit and a placebo during the second visit.
Another group received a Covid jab and placebo on the same day and a flu jab on the second visit.
The over 65 group received the Flu jab made by Seqirus in the UK.
And the younger group got Flublok from Sanofi or Flucelvax by Seqirus.
Afterwards, 97 percent of the participants were willing to have the two vaccines during one visit again in the future.
In total, the study had 679 participants at 12 different sites across England and Wales.
When it comes to the scientific perspective. The researchers looked at the blood tests of the trial participants and those revealed no negative effect on the immune responses both in regards to flu and Covid jabs, when given one after another.
However, one of the flu jabs – FluBlok – seemed to be more potent when administered along with Pfizer.
Overall, the study concluded it’s safe to receive your Covid shot and flu jab in a single appointment.
At the moment, booster Covid jabs are being offered to people aged over 50 or those at higher risk due to their profession or general health.
If you’re interested in having a flu jab but not eligible for the free one, you can still book with your preferred pharmacy.
However, Boots is urging to book quickly as slots are being taken everyday.
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