PREGNANT women are being offered the seasonal flu jab at their hospital antenatal appointments as part of a new initiative intended to improve uptake of the vaccine in Barnsley.

Maternity services at Barnsley Hospital are promoting the jab because, last year, just 38 per cent (441 mums) had it, even though they were at risk of catching the virus.

Sue Gibson, Head of Midwifery at Barnsley Hospital said: "We have already vaccinated a number of pregnant women against the flu while they were at the hospital for antenatal appointments. Many say that it is convenient for them to get protected against flu at the same time as seeing their midwife.

"The vaccine is safe for mother and baby and can be given at any stage of pregnancy, and the earlier you have the vaccine the better as it means you will be protected for the whole winter.”

Anita Dobson, Public Health Specialist Nurse for NHS Barnsley said: “As well as protecting the mother, the vaccine is important because it protects the baby against flu during the first six months of life when they are too young to receive the jab.”

Back in October, NHS Barnsley brought snow to town to raise awareness of the jab. We filmed it. If you missed the video, it's here.

Have you had the flu jab? Would you have it? Your thoughts welcome in the comment box below.