You will know that the roll-out of the GP-led vaccination programme starts this week across the country, and some local residents over 80 are having their COVID vaccine over the next few days.
It is a phased programme with sites opening up across west Hertfordshire over the coming weeks. In Dacorum the plans are progressing well and the programme will be up and running and vaccinating local people during the first week of January.
All the GPs in Dacorum have come together and joined forces to deliver this programme together. This means that we can make the most of our workforce and deliver the programme most effectively for patients. We are also expanding our workforce and are pleased to have already had lots of interest from people wanting to become vaccinators to contribute to this programme as it develops in the coming months.
You will know that the joint committee on vaccination and immunisation has set out the priority groups to receive the COVID vaccine, and so it is the over 80s in your area who will be invited to have their jab at our centre in the coming weeks. Other priority groups will follow as more supplies are made available.
We are urging everyone who is called in for a COVID vaccination appointment to accept and to make sure they return for the second dose – around 21 days later.
We would also welcome your support in reassuring local residents and also in encouraging them to wait until they are contacted, rather than ring their surgery. As you can imagine, our colleagues working on this huge programme of work are keen to focus on this task, and also on the other ways that general practice is trying to look after patients during these busy winter months. Our practices will be sending out information to the patients as soon as the vaccination appointment schedules are finalised.
Finally we are reminding everyone to help us to slow the spread of this virus, by remembering the key measures we can all take: wear a face covering; keep socially distant from other people; and wash hands often and well.
Question: When will we be getting the vaccine?
Answer: First week in January
Question: How will we be invited for an appointment
Answer: Letter for those who don’t have mobile phones?
Question: Where will we be getting the vaccine?
Answer: One Central Site in Dacorum
Question: When do I need to contact the surgery to make an appointment?
Answer: Do not contact the surgery, we will contact you
Question: What are the priority groups for vaccinations?
The NHS Covid-19 vaccination programme is now underway and is starting to be rolled out in GP-led vaccination centres. The information below answers some of patients’ key questions about getting the vaccine.
When will I be getting the vaccine?
People in the top priority groups, agreed by the independent Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, will get the vaccine first. More information about how the vaccine will be rolled out to people in order of priority, starting with those who most need protecting from the virus, is in the Why do I have to wait? leaflet.
The vaccine is being provided first of all for patients aged 80 and over. Vaccinations in the Dacorum area for the first eligible patients will start from the first week of January. Patients need two doses of the vaccine, and they will be delivered approximately 21 days apart.
How will I be invited for an appointment?
We will contact you to invite you to book your appointment when it is your turn. You will need to book an appointment for both your first and second dose.
Please DO NOT contact the GP practice to try to make an appointment before you hear from us. This will allow our staff to focus on helping patients needing medical help as well as working on this important vaccination programme. GP practice staff are not currently able to give you any more information than we have provided here.
Where will I be getting the vaccine?
Your vaccine will be in a local vaccination centre that is run by local GPs. The Pfizer vaccine is safe and highly effective, but it is complex to move, store and prepare and so can only be given in vaccination centres that meet particular requirements.
There will be one vaccination centre in the Dacorum area. All vaccination centres must be in places that are easy for people to get to. The NHS will announce more details a little closer to the vaccination centre opening and more information will, of course, be provided to patients at the time of booking.
Will housebound and care home patients be able to have the vaccine at home in the same way as for the flu vaccine.
We will be making arrangements to offer the Covid-19 vaccine in people’s homes and in care homes for people who are housebound or not able to travel.
However, we can’t confirm when that might be as this may have to wait for supply of the right type of vaccine. This is because only some vaccines can be transported between people’s homes.