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Advice and resources

Advice and resources for nursing staff on seasonal flu vaccinations

Flu vaccinations 2019/2020

Please see the following list of authoritative resources on influenza and influenza vaccinations. If you are having any difficulties accessing vaccination in your frontline care role, please call us via RCND on: 03457726100

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Introduction

The influenza immunisation programme in the UK is based on recommendations by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), an independent expert advisory committee that advises all UK health departments on vaccination and immunisation programmes.

Annual flu immunisation is recommended for:

• Those at particular risk of severe infection; the elderly, those who are immunosupressed and those with other underlying health conditions.

• Children aged 2 and 3 years.

• All primary school age children.

• Those at most risk of transmitting infection such as;

• All health and social care workers with direct patient/client contact.

• carers.

Health and social care workers

Health care workers have a responsibility to protect their patients and for nurses this is enshrined in the NMC code. Flu vaccination for health care workers helps to stop the transmission of the flu virus and is fully supported by professional bodies like the RCN and British Medical Association (BMA).

The RCN recommends that all members with direct patient care are fully vaccinated against flu as part of their clinical and professional responsibilities to reduce the risks of spreading the infection to the people they care for.

Having a flu vaccine annually remains the best way to protect against catching or spreading flu. Nursing staff should make sure that they have the flu vaccine annually to protect themselves and that those they care for also have the vaccine every year.

Guidance is available from the Specialist Pharmacy Services (SPS) on authorisation for administration of the influenza vaccine for health care staff.

General guidance

RCN clinical topic - immunisation

Public Health England publication ‘Immunisation Against Infectious Diseases’: The Green Book

Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA)

PHE campaign resource centre for information on health care worker vaccination and other programmes. In Wales see resources here and for Northern Ireland see healthcare worker flu resources

The Chief Medical Officer and Chief Pharmaceutical officer in England have issued advice on the prescribing and supply of antiviral medicines for the prevention and treatment of influenza. This can be located on the Gov.uk website.

Immunisation training

Public Health England immunisation training standards and core curriculum are applicable in England and Wales. The principles outlined in the standards may provide immunisers with some useful guidance and may be of use for those in Scotland and Northern Ireland as well. 

England and Wales

National Minimum Standards and Core Curriculum for Immunisation Training for Registered Healthcare Practitioners (2018).

National Minimum Standards and Core Curriculum for Immunisation Training of Healthcare Support Workers (2012).

Scotland

NHS Education for Scotland 

Wales

E-learning resource for NHS Wales. 

Northern Ireland

Healthcare worker flu resources 

Training resources

• Flu immunisation e-learning programme

An interactive flu immunisation e-learning programme, updated with the 2019/2020 influenza season information. The resource is written by PHE, and produced by Health Education England’s e-Learning for Healthcare, is available for anyone involved in delivering the flu immunisation programme.

Wales e-learning programme 

• Video for administration of the live attenuated flu vaccine for children (LAIV)

NHS Education for Scotland has made a video for health professionals on how to administer the vaccine.

Country specific guidance

England:

Public Health England (PHE) annual Flu programme resources.

NHS England Annual Flu Plan and letter.

NHS Choices Influenza vaccination.

 • Childhood flu programme: information for healthcare practitioners 

All children with underlying health problems from 6 months

Children aged two and three on 31 August at their GP surgery

Vaccination is offered to all primary school children from reception through to year six

 

Northern Ireland:

The NI Public Health Agency's Seasonal Influenza public health information and Flu Aware NI.

NI government letters and communications.

Healthcare worker flu resources 

Childhood influenza vaccination: 

• All children with underlying health problems aged from six months.

• All pre-school children aged two years or over on 1 September 2019 (DOB between 2 July 2015 and 1 September 2017)

• The vaccination is offered to all primary school children from reception through to year six.

 

Scotland:

Health Protection Scotland Influenza information and NHS24 Influenza pages.

E-learning resource from NHS Education for Scotland.

• Specific education resources for influenza vaccination.

Children: 

See NHS inform child flu vaccine:

• Children from six months of age with a long term health condition.

• The vaccine is delivered through primary care (GP appointment) for children aged two to five who are not yet in school.

• Children in primary school from reception class upwards are being offered the vaccine in school. Children of this age not in school can access their vaccine at their GP surgery. 

Wales:

• All elements of the annual influenza campaign in Wales (including for health and social care workers) are supported by Wales' Beat Flu campaign.

Children: 

• Children from six months of age with a long term health condition.

• Children aged two and three on 31 August 2019 at their GP surgery (in some areas three-year old's will be offered the vaccine in local authority nurseries). 

• Children in primary school from reception class upwards are being offered the vaccine in school. Children of this age not in school can access their vaccine at their GP surgery. 

 







Page last updated - 20/08/2019