NHS Scotland recommends that the flu vaccine is offered to all:
- people aged 50 or over
- residents or staff working in a care home for older adults
- younger adults in long-stay nursing and residential care settings
- frontline healthcare workers
- frontline social care workers
- people aged 16 to 49 years with an eligible health condition
- people aged 16 to 49 years who are household contacts of someone with a weakened immune system
- an unpaid carer or a young carer (aged 16 years or over)
- pregnant women
- nursery, primary or secondary school teachers or pupil-facing support workers in local authority or independent settings
- prison officers or support workers who deliver direct front-facing detention services
Further guidance about eligible groups
The Royal College of Midwives along with Scotland’s Chief Medical and Chief Nursing Officers recommend that all pregnant women should have the flu vaccine.
The flu vaccine can be given at any stage in pregnancy during flu season.
Pregnant women should have the flu vaccine every time they are pregnant because the flu viruses circulating change each year and immunity reduces over time.
The flu vaccine helps protect pregnant women and their developing babies against flu during pregnancy and for at least three months after birth.
Most NHS boards and Health and Social Care Partnerships (HSCPs) will be delivering the flu vaccine to pregnant women through their local maternity services this year.
Adults with a health condition
People with certain health conditions are at greater risk from flu.
View the list of conditions and diseases that can make flu more serious on NHS inform's flu vaccine pages (external website).
Adults in care settings
The flu vaccination is also recommended for people in:
- long-stay residential care homes
- other long-stay care facilities
Frontline healthcare workers
Frontline healthcare workers are offered a free flu vaccine every year.
Frontline social care workers
Frontline social care workers who regularly provide direct care and support are eligible for a free flu vaccine.
This includes, but is not limited to, people working in:
- residential care for adults
- children's residential or secure care
- the community, providing care at home (including housing support and personal assistant)
Unpaid and young carers
Unpaid and young carers are eligible to receive the free flu vaccine. Young carers are those who are under 18 years old.
Unpaid carers provide essential help and support without pay. They may care for a partner, child, relative, friend or neighbour.
Support may be needed due to age, physical or mental illness, addiction or disability.
For further information about eligible adult groups in 2022 to 2023, view the Scottish Government Chief Medical Officer letter (external website).