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June 2019

Could you help boost uptake of flu vaccine?

Practice nurses across the country are being urged to help with new research that could lead to an increase in uptake of seasonal flu vaccine.

The Practice Managers Association (PMA) together with a team of researchers from the University of East Anglia (UEA) have released a survey in which practice managers and nurses are asked a series of questions to help identify how uptake of the flu vaccine with at-risk patients aged between 18-64 can be improved.

The PMA’s collaboration with the UEA will look at different approaches taken by practices to raise rates, and how these can be spread nationally in a cost-effective way.

Austin Ambrose, the PMA’s Client Services Director, said: ‘Practice managers and nurses play an essential role in the delivery of NHS immunisation programmes and improving flu vaccination coverage of at-risk patients has the potential to save lives and prevent [hospital] admissions – often at a time when the NHS is most stretched.’

Professor Richard Fordham, Professor of Allied Health Economics at Norwich Medical School added: ‘Chronically ill patients who are at risk of more severe symptoms and possibly dying should be accessing a flu jab seasonally in much greater numbers than we are currently seeing. Knowing how to make this easier for them, removing barriers and doing better at offering vaccines at the practice level is essential. 

‘This survey is the first to focus on what in particular we can do to ensure a better up-take from registered patients and their families in the future.’

This research will be presented in an online event with the King’s Fund this autumn.

Access the survey, which closes soon, here: