Cases of flu have climbed quickly in the past week in England, suggesting the season has begun earlier than normal, say officials.
People may have little immunity to flu after a break from the disease during Covid pandemic restrictions.
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) says hospital and ICU admissions for the respiratory disease are rising the fastest in children under five.
Flu can be a nasty illness for children, leading to serious problems such as bronchitis and pneumonia; they can spread it easily to others who are at risk too. Flu is also a serious illness for pregnant mums, as pregnancy naturally weakens the body’s immune system, making them more susceptible to flu.That’s why children aged 2 or 3 years on 31 August 2022, all primary school-aged children and eligible 11–16-year-olds are being offered a free flu nasal spray, which is safe, effective and can help protect them and the people they meet. And pregnant women can get a free flu vaccine at any stage of pregnancy, it is the safest way to help protect them and their unborn baby against flu.
This winter, with COVID-19 circulating at the same time, it is more important than ever that we boost our immunity and protect ourselves and our loved ones by making sure we’ve had our vaccines. Make sure your child has had their FREE flu nasal spray and that their other childhood immunisations are up to date. Find out more: