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Teddy bears picnic event to encourage toddlers to get vaccinated against flu

Over 70 brave pre-schoolers turned up to a teddy bears picnic day at a local surgery to receive their flu vaccine.

The children at Pen y Maes in Gwersyllt, were treated to a story while they waited for their appointments before taking part in a mini workshop on how to make healthy snacks.

They also received a goody bag with a story book and teddy bear provided by the surgery and Wrexham Council’s Family information Service.

The vaccine, which involves no needles, is available to children who were aged between two and eight on 31 August.

Sian Davies, parent of Roczan Davies said: “I brought him here today because I don’t want him to miss out. He’s vulnerable at playgroups and events where he’s mixing with lots of other children. The last thing you want is a poorly toddler, and of course flu can become so serious.

“I saw an advert for this event and I enquired about it, then the surgery got in touch with me and it was so easy to get his vaccine done.

“Roczan was fine, it’s just a nasal spray so it doesn’t hurt, it’s really easy and it’s great to have all the kids together having their vaccine as there’s such a lovely, friendly atmosphere in the surgery”.

Lindsey Jones, Practice Nurse at Pen y Maes GP surgery spoke of the importance of getting children vaccinated and urged other parents in the area to make sure their child receives their vaccine this winter.

“This is a really friendly event which we hoped would encourage parents to bring their children for their flu vaccine. Seeing lots of children around having the vaccine takes the fear out of the process.

“It’s really important that young children are vaccinated as children can spread viruses quite quickly and having them vaccinated helps protect the child and the rest of the population.

“Flu has the potential to be very serious and can lead to complications especially for children who have other conditions like asthma, so I would really encourage all parents to take their children to be vaccinated.”

Stephanie Corcoran from Wrexham Council’s Family Information Service added: “We want to work together to reach parents in the local community and make sure they get the support they need in lots of areas, but this includes helping to make sure the children in our community get vaccinated.

“This is why we supplied the teddy bears for this event, it seemed such a nice way to get children and parents to engage.”

Public Health Wales is urging all parents of eligible children to ensure they have the vaccine, which helps protect against catching flu as well as helping to prevent the spread of this potentially serious and highly contagious illness.

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