Covid-19 Vaccine

Update 28 January 2021

We continue to receive very limited supplies of the AstraZeneca vaccine. As of Saturday 23 January we managed to vaccinate all our eligible care home patients and 78% of our mobile over-80s population. We didn’t actually receive our first vaccines until 7 January. We have used up every vaccine supplied prior to the next week’s delivery.

Contrary to some upsetting and ill informed posts on Facebook, we are strictly adhering to the JCVI guidance on prioritising vaccines. We expect to complete our over-80s this weekend and will move on to our next priority group, the “clinically extremely vulnerable” group, along with patients aged 70-74 who are shielding and have not been invited to the mass vaccination centres.

Patients should be aware that the priority groups are being split between ourselves and the Health Board’s mass vaccination centres. The Health Board have been calling patients age 75-79 and all non-shielding 70-74 year olds to their mass centres. This explains why some younger patients may have received their vaccine earlier than our over-80s. This is totally beyond our control.

Each week so far we have received less than our expected allocation of vaccines. This has made planning our efforts very difficult. We have also not yet been informed which of the groups we will be vaccinating going forwards, this makes our longer term planning impossible.

One important point to make is that to date we have not wasted a single vaccine! This is a feat of which we are proud, since each vial of the vaccine can produce a variable number of doses. At the end of each day our nurses have managed to use the left over vaccines by calling patients within the risk group at very short notice.

Updated 19 January 2021

The practice is now receiving regular batches of the AstraZeneca ‘Oxford’ Covid-19 vaccine. We have immunised patients in our care homes and are making progress vaccinating our over-80s. We will contact you with an appointment.

You can download the pre-vaccination checklist in a leaflet here. It would also be helpful to read the leaflet giving information about the vaccine which is likely to answer a lot of your questions. The leaflet is here. If you have questions, please ask us once you have your appointment but before you come for your vaccination. We are trying to keep our vaccination process as Covid safe as possible and want to minimise the time you spend in the surgery.

Please do not contact the practice asking when you will be offered the vaccine. The Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisations has advised the government on the priorities for the vaccine and these must be strictly adhered to. The programme will begin with care home residents, followed by the over 80 age group. You can access the JCVI priority list here.

The practice will contact you to arrange your vaccine. This will be a major programme of work over the next few months and we really want to get the vaccines rolled out as quickly as possible. We will still have our daily general workload and having to deal with unnecessary queries will only delay us, whether by telephone or AskMyGP.

We will of course arrange to vaccinate our housebound patients, but would ask that patients who are otherwise fit to attend surgery do not request home vaccination on grounds of shielding. This is simply for logistical reasons, home vaccinations take us much longer and will delay the programme.

If you have queries about the vaccine, please wait until we contact you and we will do our best to answer them.

There are no medical contraindications to vaccination apart from patients who have had an anaphylactic reaction to the Covid vaccine itself. Patients who suffer allergies or urticaria or who have had previous anaphylaxis to foods (e.g. nuts) can safely have the vaccine.

The side effect profile is similar to the seasonal flu vaccine, common side effects are some pain at the injection site and short lived malaise and fever.

You cannot have the vaccine if you have had or tested positive for Covid-19 within the last 28 days or if you have had another vaccine within the previous 7 days.