Isle of Wight children in school years reception to 11 will be offered a flu vaccine over the coming weeks.

The Solent NHS Trust school immunisation team will be administering nasal sprays in primary and secondary schools.

Scroll down for details about children too young for school...

Angela Anderson, Deputy Chief Nurse at Solent NHS Trust, said: "We are encouraging the families of all reception to year 11 children to ensure that their child receives the flu vaccination, so that they are protected against the virus this autumn and winter.

"Letters are being sent to schools outlining how our dedicated teams of nurses will be vaccinating children on arranged days, as well as offering evening and weekend clinics in the community, making it a really quick and easy process."

Isle of Wight County Press: Image by Pixabay.Image by Pixabay.

Dr Nicola Decker, Clinical Leader at the Hampshire, Southampton and Isle of Wight CCG said: "I want to encourage you to get your children vaccinated because the flu is a very common childhood illness and can be really unpleasant for them.

"The vaccine is a nasal spray – a single spray up each nostril – it’s quick, it’s painless and it’s really easy. People think ‘it’s just flu’ but unfortunately it can lead to complications and even hospitalisation which is why it’s important to have the vaccination."

The nasal spray vaccination will also be available from GPs.

Children who were aged 2 and 3 on August 31 and any child older than six months with an underlying health condition, are also eligible.

An injection is offered as an alternative to the nasal spray.

Meanwhile, the government has announced plans to offer 12 to 15 year olds the Covid-19 vaccine.

The organisation that oversees injections has said the benefits are marginal and did not recommend it, but the government says the JCVI has not considered what it called the 'wider benefits'.