DOCTORS and midwives are urging pregnant women across the south east to protect themselves and their unborn child from flu by getting the flu jab this winter.

The NHS says now is the ideal time to have the flu vaccination, which is available from GPs, maternity service providers or pharmacies, before the flu virus starts circulating.

Clare Simpson, NHS England (south east) consultant in public health, said: “It’s important that all pregnant women protect themselves and their unborn baby by having the vaccination.

"Flu is a serious risk to both the mother and unborn baby. Pregnant women have an increased risk of developing complications from flu.

"The vaccine can be given at any stage of pregnancy and is safe for mother and baby.

"So if you are pregnant and haven’t yet had your vaccine, please speak with your GP/maternity service provider/local pharmacy as soon as possible. The vaccine is free and will offer protection to you and your baby."