Getting the flu vaccine is the most effective way to protect yourself and your loved ones against the flu.

The impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) on our healthcare system has been visible to us all, and this coming winter we may be faced with the combined risk of coronavirus and flu.

Those most at risk from the flu are also most vulnerable to coronavirus. To help protect yourself from the complications of flu and prevent avoidable hospital admissions, you are able have your flu vaccine in either Slane Pharmacy or Tullyallen Pharmacy.

This year, the seasonal flu vaccine protects against the 4 strains of flu virus recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the strains most likely to be circulating this season.

The flu viruses that are circulating change every year. This is why you need to get a new vaccine each year.

You should get your flu vaccination from early October to be protected for flu season.

The flu vaccine is free if you are in an at-risk group but you may be charged a consultation fee, unless you have a medical card or a GP visit card.

The flu vaccine doesn’t contain any live viruses – it cannot give you the flu.

How it works

The flu vaccine helps your immune system to produce antibodies to fight influenza virus. If you have been vaccinated and you come into contact with the virus, these antibodies will attack it and stop you from getting sick.

The flu vaccine starts to work within two weeks.

At-risk groups

We are urging people in at-risk groups to get the flu vaccine. We strongly recommended the vaccine if you:

  • are 65 years of age and over
  • are pregnant
  • are a child or adult with a long-term health condition
  • work in healthcare
  • are a carer or household contact of anyone at increased medical risk of flu
  • live in a nursing home or other long-term care facility
  • in regular contact with pigs, poultry or water fowl

You should not  get the flu vaccine if you have had a severe allergic (anaphylaxis) reaction to a previous dose or any part of the vaccine.

Don’t get the flu vaccine if you are taking medicines called combination checkpoint inhibitors (e.g. ipilimumab plus nivolumab)

Vaccination should be re-scheduled if you have an acute illness with a temperature greater than 38°C.

More information