Winter flu vaccinations have begun for staff at Bedford Hospital to help protect patients by reducing the spread of flu in the community.
Employees throughout the hospital trust were being offered the vaccine from last week.
And the free vaccine is being particularly focused at frontline staff, such as those working on the wards, in accident and emergency, theatres, paediatrics and maternity.
Members of the occupational health department are visiting all wards and departments on a rolling programme over the next two-and-a-half months, with the aim of vaccinating as many staff as possible.
Staff can also visit the occupational health department to receive a vaccination in greater privacy, and there will be vaccination sessions from November onwards in The Swannery restaurant.
Director of nursing and patient services Nina Fraser said: “We want as many staff as possible to be vaccinated against catching flu this year. If they are vaccinated it means they are less likely to pass flu on to our patients, less likely to pass it on to their loved ones, and less likely to be off work sick.
“Last month the trust received an additional £3.7million from the Department of Health to help manage winter pressures, and as part of that we have been asked to get our clinical staff vaccination rates to 75%. If we can do that then it will be good news for the hospital, our staff and our patients.
“I would urge all clinical staff to make sure that they get vaccinated.”