People in Hastings and St Leonards are being urged to get themselves vaccinated against flu as winter nears.
Public health chiefs from East Sussex County Council issued the alert as part of a national drive to reduce the impact of the virus.
Older people, the very young, pregnant women and those with a long-term health conditions such as asthma, diabetes or heart disease qualify for free flu jabs on the NHS as they are particularly at risk of suffering serious effects of flu.
Meanwhile, carers and frontline health and social care workers are also urged to get themselves vaccinated to protect themselves and those around them.
Cynthia Lyons, East Sussex acting director of public health, said, “Flu is an unpleasant illness, but can pose serious risks to those in at-risk groups and it’s essential people in these groups protect themselves during the winter months.
“Flu has been comparatively mild in recent years but the virus is very unpredictable because new strains of it circulate each year, so it’s impossible to predict how many serious cases there might be.
“Anyone who has suffered with flu will know how very unwell it makes you feel, therefore we’d encourage as many people as possible to get themselves vaccinated.”
Since 2013, two and three-year-olds have been eligible for free flu vaccinations via a simple, painless nasal spray and this year four-year-olds also qualify for the first time.
More information about flu is available online at www.nhs.uk/conditions/flu.