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Swine flu deaths prompt vaccination call

The Health Protection Agency has urged people to take up the flu vaccine after it emerged the swine flu H1N1 virus has made a resurgence across the country.

The virus has killed 10 adults under 65 in the past six weeks, it has been confirmed. Most had underlying conditions but "a small proportion" was healthy before contracting the virus.

"These figures demonstrate that the effects of flu are not to be underestimated. It is not the same as getting a cold and can seriously affect your health," said Professor David Salisbury, Director of Immunisation at the Department of Health.

"The seasonal flu jab protects against the dominant strains – this year it protects against three types of flu, including the type known as swine flu,” he added.

Get vaccinated as soon as possible

"It is important to remember that people with diabetes are a high-risk group when it comes to getting flu, so it is crucial that they are vaccinated as soon as possible this winter. The jab is free to everyone with diabetes," said Cathy Moulton, Clinical Advisor at Diabetes UK.

"Having flu can really upset diabetes control and can cause blood glucose levels to fluctuate. This can leave people with diabetes open to many health problems, including complications of flu such as pneumonia and bronchitis," added Cathy.

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