What is seasonal influenza?

Influenza (flu) is a very infectious illness caused by the flu virus. The virus infects the airways and the lungs. Flu circulates in the community during the flu season. The flu season usually starts at the beginning of October and lasts until the end of April.

Can the flu cause serious illness?

Yes, the flu can be very serious and for some it can be life threatening due to complications like pneumonia, bronchitis and on rare occasions inflammation of the brain.

The flu may worsen chronic health issues. Some people are more susceptible to these serious complications, such as pregnant people, people over 65 and those with underlying conditions such as chronic lung disease and diabetes.

Combo Vaccine : Flu and Pneumococcal (pneumonia) Vaccine

You can now book to get both your Flu vaccination and Pneumococcal vaccination at the same time. These will be administered in two separate arms during the one appointment.

What is the flu vaccination?

The flu vaccination helps your immune system produce antibodies to fight against the infection.

Each year the strains of the flu virus change so each year a new vaccine is produced to provide protection from new strains. By getting the flu vaccination your body is better prepared to fight the virus if you do come in contact with it.

How much does this service cost?

The price of the Flu vaccination varies based on your age and your medical history.

The vaccine is free to those in one of the "at-risk" groups and if you are aged 65 and over.

For adults aged 18-64 years who are not in an "at-risk" group as specified by the HSE, the price for the service is €35

How does the service work in 2023?

  • Appointment only

    This year you should book your appointment online with our appointment booking tool or by popping in when next passing your local LloydsPharmacy to ensure you have a slot allocated.

  • Complete Questionnaire

    There is a short questionnaire you need to complete, and it is best that this is done in advance of your flu vaccination. Your local Lloydspharmacy will give you the leaflet to complete in advance or you can download it from our website. It is best this is handed in to the pharmacy in advance of your flu vaccination to reduce the amount of time required in Pharmacy during your Flu vaccination appointment. You can download the form below.

  • Free from Symptoms

    On the day of your appointment if you have symptoms of COVID-19 or any flu like symptoms you MUST cancel or rebook. When you arrive for your appointment, you will be asked a short series of questions to confirm that you do not have any symptoms.

  • Dress appropriately

    When it comes to preparing for your appointment, you should wear appropriate clothing for a vaccination to be administered to your upper arm.

  • Arrive on time

    If you arrive too early you may be asked to return closer to your allotted time.

  • Children

    For children getting the vaccination, you should bring something to distract them. All children aged under 16 must be accompanied by a parent/guardian.

  • The Vaccine

    Once you are happy, the pharmacist will administer the vaccine, this is a quick and relatively painless procedure. Afterwards, you will be asked to remain in the pharmacy for 15 mins to make sure everything went well.

Who should receive the Flu Vaccine?

Groups eligible to receive a HSE free vaccine: Getting the flu vaccine - HSE.ie

While everyone should consider getting a flu vaccine, it is especially important that the following groups get vaccinated:

  • People aged 65 years and over
  • Children aged 2-12 years
  • Pregnant women (at any stage of pregnancy).
  • Those aged 6-23 months and aged 13-64 years with:
    • Chronic heart disease including acute coronary syndrome.
    • Chronic liver disease.
    • Chronic neurological disease including multiple sclerosis, hereditary and degenerative disorders of the central nervous system.
    • Chronic renal failure.
    • Cancer patients.
    • Chronic respiratory disease, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis, moderate or severe asthma or bronchopulmonary dysplasia.
    • Diabetes mellitus.
    • Down syndrome.
    • Haemoglobinopathies.
    • Immunosuppression due to disease or treatment, including asplenia or splenic dysfunction and cancer patients.
    • Morbid obesity, i.e., body mass index of 40 or over.
    • On long‐term aspirin therapy (because of the risk of Reyes syndrome).
    • With any condition (e.g., cognitive dysfunction, spinal cord injury, seizure disorder, or other neuromuscular disorder) that can compromise respiratory function especially those attending special schools/day centres.
    • With moderate to severe neurodevelopmental disorders such as cerebral palsy and intellectual disability.
  • Healthcare workers including all General Practice and pharmacy staff.
  • Residents of nursing homes and other long stay institutions.
  • Carers and household contacts of people with increased medical risk.
  • People with regular close contact with poultry, water fowl or pigs.

*please speak to your pharmacist for more information

Who should NOT get the flu vaccine?

Please speak to your pharmacist or doctor for information about the flu vaccine if any of the below apply to you.

  • Have ever experienced a severe allergic response to the flu vaccine or any component of the vaccine.
  • Are currently taking medications known as combination checkpoint inhibitors, such as ipilimumab and nivolumab.
  • If you have primary autoimmune neutropenia, which is characterised by low amounts of a certain type of white blood cell.

What about people with egg allergy?

Before receiving the vaccination, let your immunisation provider know if you have an allergy to eggs. Most people who are allergic to eggs can receive the flu vaccination.

Your pharmacist will refer you to your GP if you have:

  • had previous anaphylaxis to vaccine or any of its components or excipients.
  • hypersensitivity to the active substances, to any of the excipients, to residues, to egg and to chicken protein

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For more information on the services we offer check out our services page or visit your local store