Residents aged 65 and over are being urged by the local NHS to have their new and improved flu vaccine this year, and help reduce the impact of the virus on the local health care system significantly.
Winter is set to be extremely difficult for the NHS across the country, especially on A&E departments and local GP surgeries as they cope with the annual rise in numbers of people seeking treatment.
Last year saw 19 over 65 year olds ending up in hospital in the Crawley, Horsham and Mid Sussex area due to flu. Those requiring hospital care caused an avoidable extra strain on the NHS, with people aged 65 costing the NHS just over £96,500 due to the flu last year.
Local doctors believe this could have been avoided had those eligible taken up the opportunity to get their free jab. Just over two thirds over 65 year olds in the West Sussex had the free flu jab last year, which means thousands went unprotected and were at risk of complications if they caught the virus. This year they will get the new and improved aTIV flu jab, which improves the body’s immune response to the vaccine.
Allison Cannon, Chief Nurse and Director of Quality for East Surrey and Sussex Clinical Commissioning Groups, said:
“The coming winter could really tough for the NHS and local staff are doing everything they can to prepare for the extra pressures we expect, now we are calling on the public to play their part and get the free flu jab if they are eligible.
“The new vaccine for over 65 year olds could reduce GP flu consultations and hospitalisations, freeing up busy NHS staff to provide care for those in most need, so we are calling on those eligible to claim their free flu jab so they don’t add unnecessary pressures to local health and care services.”
Local GPs are receiving their flu vaccine stock for over the coming months in phases, those aged over 65 years old should contact their GP practice to claim their free flu jab.
Find out more about the flu vaccine at www.nhs.uk
K2 Crawley launches new management partner with Olympic and Paralympic medallists
Olympic medallist Colin Jackson CBE and Paralympic Champion Katie-George Dunlevy were on hand to help launch the new partnership between Everyone Active and Crawley Borough Council.
The 14 November marked the start of the 10-year relationship which will see the award-winning leisure operator take over the management of K2 Crawley, the Bewbush Centre and Broadfield 3G Pitch and Pavilion.
Jackson hosted the day and shared his experiences of working as an Everyone Active Sporting Champions ambassador while Dunlevy shared details of her training at the centres in Crawley and winning Paralympic gold in Rio.
Jackson then set a series of gym challenges before cheering on pupils from Thomas Bennett Community College trying to beat the times set by the Olympian.
World record holder, Jackson, said:
“I was thrilled to be at the launch of the new partnership between Everyone Active and Crawley Borough Council. It was a great day. I can’t wait to see the partnership progress in the future.”
Paralympic Champion, Dunlevy, said:
“The day went really well. I know that everyone is very positive about the relationship and the future. I know that everyone is really excited to get started.”
Stuart Mills, Everyone Active area contract manager, said:
“This is a very exciting time for sports and leisure in the borough. The Council has already invested in improving centres to ensure people have access to state-of-the-art facilities, and we’re proud to have been chosen to deliver these across the community.
“We are very much looking forward to working with Crawley Borough Council and helping them achieve their goal of providing a top quality service while building healthier communities by encouraging more people to get active.”
Councillor Chris Mullins, Cabinet member for Wellbeing at Crawley Borough Council, said:
“This is an exciting new chapter in the history of K2 Crawley, the Bewbush Centre and Broadfield 3G Pitch and Pavilion.
“Our partnership with Everyone Active will provide leisure users with a quality service and inspire more and more people to get involved in physical activities.”