COVID-19 VACCINATION INFORMATION
Please do not call the surgery to enquire about COVID-19 vaccinations. Strictly controlled priority groups will be contacted directly to book into vaccination clinic appointments. For further information please click on the link below.
Open Letter to our Patients
You will have heard that a COVID vaccination programme is very soon going to be rolled out to the first eligible cohort of patients aged 80 or over. We have had to mobilise and adapt very quickly to enable the successful roll out of this programme. We will be in the 2nd rollout wave in which the vaccine will be delivered to the vaccine delivery site around the 17th December.
We also need your support. As things are moving so quickly we may need to send out text invites in case the Post Office is not able to deliver letters on time. To that end, if you know or care for someone over 80 we need you to ask them if they have a mobile number registered at the surgery and to check if it is correct. If it is not, please update these details by completing the online contact form below. We will of course have back-up systems in place for those patients who do not have mobile phones.
In order to support General Practice in delivering this programme, NHS England and the CCG have issued clear guidance on creating capacity by focussing only on urgent work and certain key areas. It also means we may have to de-prioritise non urgent work and cancel non-urgent appointments at short notice. We would like to reassure you that as always, we will continue to offer urgent care throughout this time. We are going to suspend our e consultation option for this week.
Additionally, you will be used to receiving invites for health reviews. However certain reviews (Asthma, Hypertension, Coronary Heart Disease, TIA/Strokes and Heart failure) will be temporarily stopped for the next 4 months. Please do not be alarmed if you do not receive your expected invite for review - we will instead be focussing on delivering COVID vaccinations. Once this delivery has been completed, we aim to catch up on reviews and monitoring bloods that have been deferred or cancelled.
As you can appreciate, the landscape is changing very quickly and our priority remains the care of our patients whilst delivering this programme. Thank you for your patience and support.
Whiteladies Medical Group
COVID Mass Vaccination FAQS
How can I volunteer?
Thank you very much for your offer of help. If you are looking to volunteer to support our vaccination programme, please email Kelly on Kelly.email@example.com . If you are looking to volunteer for other programmes, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
When will I get called for my vaccine?
The NHS is following a national prioritisation order to deliver the vaccine. This has been set by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), and we are inviting people in according to this criteria.
We will be in touch when it is your turn, please wait to be called. You may receive a letter from the national booking team. The letter will have instructions on how to book your appointment. However, you do have the option to wait until we call you and book you in locally.
Please do not call the GP surgery for an appointment, we are unable to book you an appointment, we will contact you when it is your turn.
How are you prioritising?
The roll out of the vaccination programme is following guidance set by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) which is scientifically driven to ensure those most at risk receive their vaccination first.
We will continue to follow the JCVI advice and vaccinate those most at risk first, and those who work closest with them - care home residents and staff, followed by people over 80 and health and social care workers, then other people in order of age and risk.
Why did some places start vaccinating early than others? How was this decided?
Locally we had to prioritise areas with high numbers of people aged 80 or over in line with the prioritisation set out by the independent Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.
Since the programme launched on 15 December there are 19 GPs sites live, two hospital hubs, Ashton Gate and several local pharmacies across Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire. With the approval of the Oxford Vaccine we are now moving through the categories at pace and as deliveries allow.
If you are in one of the first four categories you will be invited to have your vaccine shortly.
You will be contacted by The Family Practice or you will receive a letter from the national booking system to book at either one of the local pharmacy sites or Ashton Gate. Please choose the location most convenient for you.
I am in 3&4 – when will I be called?
Locally we continue to prioritise cohorts 1 and 2 (the over 80s, care home residents and health and care staff) as we have almost vaccinated everyone in these groups.
As we finish vaccinating everyone in cohorts 1 and 2 we will start inviting those aged over 70 years and the clinically extremely vulnerable population (cohorts 3 and 4).
We are working hard to move through the priority cohorts as quickly as possible, and we will contact you when it is your turn to book.
Please do not contact us directly, practices are unable to book Covid-19 vaccination appointments but we will contact you when it is your turn. Our only limitation in speed of delivery is the supply of vaccine.
You may receive a letter from the national booking team inviting you to get your vaccine at Ashton Gate or other Mass Vaccinations Centres. You may choose to be vaccinated either by Healthwest (The Family Practice is part of a Primary Care Network called Healthwest) when you are invited or to follow the instructions in the letter from the national booking team.
Thank you for your patience at this time.
Enquiries on deliveries
Deliveries of the vaccine are booked and managed at a national level and all sites locally are getting vaccines delivered.
Vaccine supply and scheduled deliveries will fully support vaccination of the JCVI priority cohorts 1-4 by 15 February. The NHS have signed deals for substantial future supply of both vaccines to replenish stocks and enable swift vaccination for first and second doses across the UK in the weeks and months ahead.
If you are in the first four JCVI groups you will be invited to your vaccination appointment as soon as possible, deliveries allowing.
Please do not contact The Family Practice to book a vaccine; we are unable to make appointments but we will be in touch with you when it is your turn.
Enquiries on second dose (as of 14/01/2021)
The NHS is following new guidance from the Government’s expert advisors which says that prioritising a first dose for as many people as possible will save more lives.
This is because even with just one dose the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has been estimated to offer 89% effectiveness from two weeks after it is given; and the Oxford/AstraZeneca has been estimated to offer 74% effectiveness in the same timeframe.
As the Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Jonathan Van Tam, has said:
“The evidence clearly shows vaccinated individuals get almost complete protection after the first dose. Simply put, every time we vaccinate someone a second time, we are not vaccinating someone else for the first time.
It means we are missing an opportunity to greatly reduce the chances of the most vulnerable people getting severely ill from Covid-19. If a family has two elderly grandparents and there are two vaccines available, it is better to give both 89 per cent than to give one 95 per cent protection with two quick doses, and the other grandparent no protection at all.”
Therefore, as a key part of the national effort to protect as many people in at-risk groups as quickly as possible, booster doses will now be delivered within 12 weeks of the first dose.
We will be in touch to reschedule your second dose as soon as possible.
Travelling to a vaccination centre
If you have received a letter from the national booking team but you do not have access to transport/ the site is not convenient/ can’t get there you can wait until you are contacted and invited to an appointment by your GP.
The Family Practice has a number of transport options in place for travel to their vaccination centre.
If you are registered housebound we will be in touch to arrange to vaccinate you in your home.
Please do not contact us directly to make an appointment, this information will be on your records and we will be in touch with you when it is your turn.
There is enough vaccine for everyone and we are working through the national prioritisation guidance as set by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).
Thank you for your patience and understanding.
Published: Dec 15, 2020
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