Health protection

Health protection involves:

  • planning, surveillance and response to outbreaks and incidents
  • preventing and reduces the harm caused by communicable diseases
  • mitigating the impact on health from environmental, chemical and radiation hazards

We work with the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) to deliver health protection to Bedford Borough.

Immunisation and vaccination

Many vaccinations are offered free of charge in the UK. Just book your appointments with your GP.

Have a look at the NHS vaccination schedule which includes information on all the vaccinations offered to infants, children, young people and adults, as well as travel vaccines and those available to those at increased risk such as flu, COVID-19, hepatitis B and chickenpox vaccines.       

Immunisation is one of the most successful and cost-effective public health interventions. Immunisation is a way of protecting against serious diseases. Once we have been immunised, our bodies are better able to fight these diseases if we come into contact with them.

Seasonal vaccinations and winter health

Both COVID-19 and flu vaccines are available for free for eligible groups from September to December. Go to Seasonal vaccinations and winter health on the NHS website to find out if you are eligible and how to book

Screening programmes

Screening is a way of finding out if people are at higher risk of a health problem, so that early treatment can be offered or information given to help them make informed decisions.

All screening tests provided by the NHS are free. 

Read more about the national screening programme, with a range of specific screenings for:

Private screening services

There are private screenings that you have to pay for. Understand the risks, benefits and limitations of private screening before you go ahead with booking a private screening.

NHS Health Check

The NHS Health Check is a free health check-up for adults in England aged 40-74. It's designed to spot early signs of stroke, kidney disease, heart disease, type 2 diabetes or dementia.

Reporting disease outbreaks

Reporting suspected outbreaks and incidents to the UKHSA in a timely manner can prevent or reduce the likelihood of harm being caused by communicable diseases or environmental hazards. 

You can do this through your local health protection team.

If you or someone you know has experienced food poisoning, please contact us at