Chair of NHS Newham CCG Dr Zuhair Zarifa encourages our fight against the flu

Dr Zuhair Zarifa

Dr Zuhair Zarifa - Credit: Archant

Flu can knock even the healthiest people off their feet for a couple of weeks, but for some people it can be really serious, causing complications such as bronchitis, pneumonia and, in some cases, even death.

That’s why it’s so important that people who are at risk of developing flu are protected against the virus and that they receive a free NHS flu jab every year.

The NHS in Newham has been working hard to keep the people flu-free and healthy. We’re delighted to report that, this winter, Newham performed the best out of all the boroughs in London in protecting people against flu.

More Newham residents who are vulnerable to flu received a free jab than in any other part of the capital. This included pregnant women and people with long-term conditions, such as diabetes or heart or respiratory disease. Newham had an impressive uptake of 66.8 per cent, compared with the London average of 52pc.

More than 75pc of people over the age of 65 also received a flu jab, beating the national target.

There was a big drop in the number of Newham people who needed to see a GP because of flu-like illnesses this winter. This fell by about five people in every 100,000, compared with an average London increase of about six people in every 100,000.

Ensuring that all our residents are aware of the dangers of flu is a priority for Newham. We are extremely pleased to see such excellent results and we want to say thank you to everyone in the borough for being flu fighters.

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It’s also important to remember that the flu jab changes every year, to protect against different strains of the virus. That’s why even people who have had a flu jab this year will need to have one again next winter to make sure they remain fit and healthy.

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