Advice and resources for nursing staff on seasonal flu vaccinations
The Influenza vaccination programme for 2020/2021 will be significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This is in terms of delivery of the vaccine safely within the pandemic guidance on infection prevention and control. It is also being aware of the potential for a COVID-19 vaccine becoming available at some point during the season.
The RCN guidance for mass vaccination provides some useful tips and considerations for managing the programme safely during the pandemic.
This information is focused is on the influenza vaccine and provides 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.
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.
The annual flu immunisation is recommended for the following groups across the UK:
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 (including students on placement) 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.
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.
See also the PHE statement: Immunisation training guidance during the COVID-19 pandemic.
England and Wales
Page last updated - 29/07/2020