Flu vaccinations can help Type 2 diabetes sufferers live longer, according to new research.
Scientists from Imperial College London found that people with the lifelong condition who receive a flu vaccination are 28% less likely to die in the next 12 months than those who do not get the jab.
They also discovered that people who have had the vaccination are much less likely to be admitted to hospital with conditions such as heart attacks, heart failure, stroke and pneumonia.
Dr Eszter Vamos, from the Department of Primary Care and Public Health at the college, led the investigation.
It was based on the Clinical Practice Research Datalink, which included 124,503 patients with Type 2 diabetes who contributed to 623,591 person-years of observation during the course of the seven-year study.
Simon O’Neill, director of health intelligence at Diabetes UK, claims the findings support the charity’s recommendation that all people with diabetes should be vaccinated against the flu every year.
“This study is further evidence of the importance of being vaccinated if you have diabetes because having the flu can be much more serious for people with the condition than it is for the rest of the population,” he said.
“This means people with diabetes, whether it is Type 2 or Type 1, should ask their GP for their free vaccination each year and should consider this an important part of managing their condition.”
Even though people with diabetes are entitled to receive a free immunisation against the flu, nearly a third of sufferers under the age of 65 are still not getting the jab.