PREGNANT women are being urged to have the flu jab to protect themselves and their unborn child.
The Isle of Wight NHS Trust has said there is strong evidence to suggest pregnant women who contract the flu virus have an increased risk of developing complications. They include bronchitis and pneumonia and the increased risk of miscarriage, the baby being born prematurely or of it being underweight.
Annie Hunter, head of midwifery at the trust, said: "All pregnant mums should make every effort to have the flu vaccination during their pregnancy. It’s important to recognise significant risks exist to both mother and unborn child, should they contract the flu virus."
The vaccine is available free of charge until the end of March.
The trust says it is completely safe during any stage of pregnancy. The jab also protects the baby for the first few months of its life.