BHF urges heart patients to get winter flu vaccine

2 October 2015        

A nurse with a patient at a surgery

As the Department of Health launches its winter campaign to increase the uptake of the flu vaccine amongst vulnerable people, we want to encourage heart patients to limit their risk.

People living with heart disease are at a much higher risk of becoming severely ill if they catch flu. In fact, people with chronic heart disease are approximately 11 times more likely to die if they develop flu compared to healthy individuals.  

Maureen Talbot, Senior Cardiac Nurse at the British Heart Foundation, said: “Worryingly, just half of people living with heart disease had the flu vaccination last year – proof that we desperately need to raise awareness amongst people at increased risk. We urge all heart patients to contact their GP to get their free flu vaccine this winter and avoid putting your health and life at risk.”

If you know someone with heart disease, please encourage them to visit their GP.

Who else is at risk?

Those who are considered to be at risk include:

  • older people 
  • pregnant women 
  • those with a long-term health condition, even one which is well-managed.

As well as these groups, children from the ages of 2-4 and those in school years 1 and 2 are also encouraged to get the flu vaccine.

Read more on the Department of Health website.