We are delighted to be able to inform you that have now had confirmation of our first delivery of Covid vaccines and are booking our patients in for appointments on Saturday 16 and Sunday 17 January 2021 at our PCN vaccine site at Perrymount Hall in Haywards Heath (formerly Clair Hall) Perrymount Road, Haywards Heath, RH16 3DN.
Nationally the vaccine is being rolled out in waves with the hospitals and large practice based sites being prioritised in the first waves. It is now our turn to get started and we are excited to be able to start inviting our patients in Group 2 (over 80s, frontline health and care staff), as well as organising for our care home residents and staff (group 1) to receive their Covid vaccinations.
We are working collaboratively with the rest of the Burgess Hill and Villages PCN (Primary Care Network) and our GP Federation, Alliance for Better Care. By working together we can deliver the vaccines as quickly as possible from a centralised site. We are working as fast as we can to deliver vaccines to our patients, as soon as we have confirmation of our next delivery we will book patients in. We do not have control over how many vaccines are delivered to us and when, we can only therefore book patients in when we know we will have the vaccines to give.
As a practice we have over 400 patients that fall into the over 80’s group, it will therefore take a minimum of 4 to 5 deliveries for us to complete the vaccinations for this age range, and as yet we do not know how frequently we will receive deliveries. So don’t worry if you haven’t received an invitation this week - we will contact you as soon as we can.
How are we contacting you?
Invitations will be sent via text message to those patients that we hold a mobile phone number for, this will include a link for you to access a direct appointment booking. Please use this as soon as you receive the text message. The remaining invitations will be generated via a telephone call from our team, for patients that don’t have a mobile phone or access to the internet.
All patients registered with us as housebound will be vaccinated by a centralised team once they have access to the Oxford vaccine, which can more easily be stored and transferred.
We are receiving a huge number of calls from patients anxious about Covid vaccinations, meaning that patients calling with an urgent medical need are having to wait longer to get through to us. If you have questions regarding the Covid vaccinations please initially refer to our website https://www.browmedicalcentre.nhs.uk/covidvaccinations or NHS information https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/coronavirus-vaccine/
If you have a question which is not addressed from the information available then please feel free to contact us, you can submit an E-consult via our website or send an email to: WSXCCG.email@example.com.
We will let you know as we have further updates, and thank you for your support and patience in the meantime,
From the GP Partners and Team at The Brow Medical Centre
When will I be vaccinated?
To enable everyone to get the vaccine in a safe and controlled way, a prioritisation list has been established with care home residents and staff and older people among the first to receive it.
The current vaccine (Pfizer) is complex as it needs to be stored at very cold temperatures and moved carefully in large doses. For the moment the MHRA hasn’t authorised splitting up those doses so they need to be stored and administered via hospital ‘hubs’ and Primary Care Networks (PCNs).
We are working with our colleagues within our PCN to establish how best we can safely deliver the vaccine to the most at-risk groups, including those aged 80 and over and health and social care workers.
How will I know when I will be able to get vaccinated?
We will contact you when you are eligible to be vaccinated and inform you of the location and date. You will also see messages in your local community. You will be able to book an appointment, either using an online or telephone booking system so that you can choose the right time and location to attend.
When will I get a second ‘booster’ dose?
The current guidance from NHSE is that the second dose will be administered within 12 weeks of the first dose. We will contact you to book a second appointment nearer the time.
What are the priority groups?
- residents in a care home for older adults and their carers
- all those 80 years of age and over and frontline health and social care workers
- all those 75 years of age and over
- all those 70 years of age and over and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals (excluding pregnant women and those under 16)
- all those 65 years of age and over
- all individuals aged 16 years to 64 years with underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality
- all those 60 years of age and over
- all those 55 years of age and over
- all those 50 years of age and over
- rest of the population (priority to be determined)
Where will I be vaccinated?
The NHS has well-established ways of delivering large-scale vaccinations across the country, for example the annual flu jab and routine immunisations for children and pregnant women, which are primarily led by GPs and community pharmacies and often delivered using local facilities. The delivery of the COVID-19 vaccination programme will build on these. Given the current requirements for social distancing, and the number of people covered, you will be asked to attend Perrymount Hall in Haywards Heath, which will be our designated vaccination centre and will enable people to be vaccinated safely.
Which vaccine will I be given?
The vast majority of patients in the first groups will be given the Pfizer vaccine. There continue to be a number of other vaccines being developed and trialled, we don’t yet know which of these will be approved for use or when this might happen.
Any vaccines that are available will have been approved because they pass the MHRA’s tests on safety and efficacy, so people can be assured that whatever vaccine they get, it is worth their while.
Can Pregnant and Breastfeeding patients have the vaccine?
The advice from PHE as of 13/1/21 is that if you are pregnant you should not be vaccinated unless you are at high risk – you can be vaccinated after your pregnancy is over. If you have had the first dose and then become pregnant you should delay the second dose until after the pregnancy is over (unless you are at high risk). If you are pregnant but think you are at high risk, you should discuss having or completing vaccination with your doctor or nurse. Although the vaccine has not been tested in pregnancy, you may decide that the known risks from COVID-19 are so clear that you wish to go ahead with vaccination. There is no advice to avoid pregnancy after COVID-19 vaccination.
There are no data on the safety of COVID-19 vaccines in breastfeeding or on the breastfed infant. Despite this, COVID-19 vaccines are not thought to be a risk to the breastfeeding infant, and the benefits of breast-feeding are well known. Because of this, the JCVI has recommended that the vaccine can be received whilst breastfeeding. This is in line with recommendations in the USA and from the World Health Organisation. If you are breastfeeding, you may decide to wait until you have finished breastfeeding and then have the vaccination.
Delivery of Vaccines for Care Homes.
We anticipate delivering the Astra Zeneca vaccine to all of our care home residents and Care Home staff on Friday 15th January.