You will have heard and read that the NHS is about to start a mass vaccination programme to try to protect us all against the Coronavirus infection.
Please understand that things may change as we move forward with the immunisation programme. We will keep you informed of any changes.
The advice here applies to the Pfizer Covid vaccine which is the only one currently approved in the UK. This advice may change if and when different vaccines are approved.
Below we have answered some of the questions you may be considering when deciding whether to have the vaccine and how we plan to deliver it.
Is the Covid vaccine safe?
All vaccines offered will have passed a rigorous national safety programme and will be safe to be delivered. It is not possible to say now which vaccine will be offered but all offered will have passed these rigorous testing and safety standards.
Who will receive the vaccine?
Most of the population will be offered the vaccine at some point in the future and we will endeavour to get everyone vaccinated as soon as is possible. The current exclusions are anyone who is pregnant or planning a pregnancy and those under 18 with no chronic health issues.
The government has outlined the order of priority for vaccination and we will be following this.
In summary, it is proposed to start with the most vulnerable to be affected by Covid-19 and the work down through different age groups starting with those over 80.
It is impossible now to give a definite date for when each age group will be offered the vaccine as this will depend on supply and how quickly we can deliver this on a local level.
When will I receive the vaccine?
The first batch of vaccines will be given centrally through NHS hospitals and other national centres. This is likely to be for in-patients and those attending out patients. The surgery itself will not be involved in these. You may however be contacted directly by the hospital if you are an in-patient or attending out patients.
The second batch of vaccines will hopefully be given starting from the first week of January at a local level although we are waiting for further information from the government before this is confirmed. We will continue until all agreed groups have been offered a chance to be vaccinated.
Where will you be vaccinating patients?
At Moss Grove we have joined with neighbouring surgeries to deliver this at the scale that is needed.
This will mean that you, our patients, will have to travel to the vaccination site to have your vaccine. It will not be delivered in the surgery.
We intend to be vaccinating in Kingswinford Community Centre, High Street, Kingswinford, DY6 8AP.
We are sure you all understand that this is huge operation for the whole NHS to deliver such a massive immunisation programme; and your understanding of what we require from you and your co-operation will be much appreciated.
How will I make an appointment?
Again, we are waiting for more information but we believe the surgery will contact you directly to make an appointment. We will update everyone via our website when this is confirmed.
Please be flexible with your availability, as we have to book some 30,000 + appointments.
When booking we will be offering dates and times for two appointments as to get full immunity with a follow up injection needed at 21 days after in initial one.
Please can we stress that we need everyone to support us in this programme and our receptionists unfortunately will not be able to meet everyone’s diary requirements or people who need to rebook etc.
This we all hope will be a once in a lifetime national effort so your support and co-operation in needed.
Do I need to do anything to help the process?
- Be flexible when making an appointment
- Arrive on time
- Wear loose short sleeve shirts/tops
- Drivers will need to wait 15 minutes after the injection before driving again
- Ensure you wear a mask and socially distance throughout your appointment
Do I need to stay afterwards for 15min?
Only if you are driving.
Will there be any after effects?
We do not anticipate any however you might have a slight ache in your arm and develop a mild, low grade fever.
What’s this about needing a second vaccine?
Yes, you will need a second vaccine, we think this will be 21 days after the initial one to ensure maximum immunity. However, this depends on what vaccine with which we are supplied.
Can I choose which vaccine I have?
No. We are only given limited supplies by the government
I am in different at-risk group to a relative can we have the vaccine at the same time?
Unfortunately not, we are under strict guidance to only vaccinate specific groups at a time.
After this am I safe from Covid?
Your immunity to developing the disease will be much greater, and once everyone in society is vaccinated this again will increase all of our immunity.
However, until national guidelines change, you should still follow the advice of Hands Face Space and continue to socially distance as well as follow any specific guidance for the area in which you live.
We hope this has informed you of what is ahead of us and again we are in anticipation very grateful for your support and co-operation over the next 6 months.