PARENTS of children aged two to three years in Ascot are being reminded that there is still time for them to visit their GP to receive their free flu vaccination.

The vaccine comes in the form of a simple nasal spray for young children, and NHS Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead has launched a campaign encouraging parents to book their child in.

This year, all GPs are administering the free vaccine for children aged two to three years old, while school nurses are running clinics for children in years reception, one, two, three and four.

Flu can be a very unpleasant illness in children causing fever, stuffy nose, dry cough, sore throat, aching muscles and joints, and extreme tiredness.

This can often last several days. Some children can get a very high fever, sometimes without the usual flu symptoms, and may need to go to hospital for treatment.

Serious complications of flu include painful ears infection, acute bronchitis and pneumonia.

East Berkshire’s Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) Associate Director of Nursing, Quality and Safety, Jo Greengrass said: “It is important that we protect young children from the flu virus in time for winter by getting them vaccinated now.

“Children can become very poorly if they catch flu impacting on the wider family, as parents/carers may have to take time off work to look after them.

“Protecting your child can also stop flu spreading to other children and the family, especially babies and grandparents, who may be at higher risk from flu. It is important to get your child vaccinated even if they had the flu vaccination last year.”

The flu vaccine provides protection against the strains of flu that are likely to circulate this year and which may be different from last year.