This winter, we expect to see both flu and Covid viruses circulating at potentially high levels. With the UK experiencing its first flu season since 2019, the population will have less immunity this year than previous flu seasons. The best way to protect ourselves, our friends and our families, is by taking up all the vaccinations that we are eligible for. 

Somerset County Council’s Public Health team are urging everyone who is eligible to get their vaccinations as soon as possible. This will boost their protection against the flu and Covid-19 viruses, whilst also helping to protect their loved ones, and relieve pressure on the NHS.

Cllr Adam Dance, Lead Member for Public Health, Equalities and Diversity at Somerset County Council said: “With both flu and Covid-19 expected to be in wide circulation this winter, it is really important that everyone who is eligible gets their vaccinations as soon as possible. We know these vaccinations are safe and effective and provide the best protection against serious illness from both these respiratory illnesses.” 

More people are expected to become unwell with flu this year as less natural immunity has been built up over the last couple of winters. Flu was stopped from circulating widely due during the pandemic due to the Covid-19 prevention measures.

Everyone eligible for the flu vaccine can book an appointment with their GP, or at selected pharmacies that offer the vaccine on the NHS. You may receive an invitation to get the vaccine, but you do not need to wait for this to book your appointment.

The national booking service for Covid-19 vaccination is now open for autumn boosters. People aged 50 and over, those who are clinically vulnerable and their household, pregnant women. Paid and unpaid carers, and front-line health and social care workers can now book an appointment or attend a walk in clinic.

There are also plenty of walk in clinics available across the country. You can find a walk in site near you at Find a walk-in coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination site - NHS (

Young children are unlikely to have built up any natural immunity to flu which is why it’s important that they receive the vaccination. This can be given as a quick and painless nasal spray.

Getting your child immunised against flu will help protect them from what can be a very nasty illness in children, with children under the age of 5 years having the highest rate of hospital admissions due to the flu virus.

Children who have not yet started primary school will get the vaccine at their GP practice. Children already in primary school will receive the vaccine at school once parents have signed and returned a consent form.

Find out more at COVID-19 and Flu vaccinations in Somerset - NHS Somerset.