More than 1,000 pregnant women across Oxfordshire have been given the flu jab to protect them from illness.

The effort to protect expectant mothers was launched in October by Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust’s maternity service.

All pregnant women having a scan at the John Radcliffe Hospital and Banbury’s Horton General Hospital were offered the jab and more than 100 women every week took up the offer.

Tony McDonald, general manager for Children’s and Women’s Division, said: “Flu can be dangerous for pregnant women and for their unborn child, but lots of pregnant women still don’t have the flu jab.

“We wanted to make it easy for women to get the vaccine, and having it at the same time as the scan is convenient for some women, who might find it hard to make the extra trip to get the jab from their GP.”

Pregnant women going to the John Radcliffe or Horton hospitals for ultrasound and outpatient appointments can ask for the vaccination until the end of the month.

Penny Green, of the trust, said: “We recommend that all pregnant women, at any stage of their pregnancy, have the seasonal flu vaccine. Pregnant women are very prone to complications from flu, which can cause serious illness for both mother and baby.”