Flu Vaccination Clinics Due To Start In September 

It's that time of year when we announce details of our forthcoming annual flu vaccination programme. This year the clinics will be delivered in a slightly different way, as a result of coronavirus. Our practice manager, Karen, explains more here: 

"The safety and health of both our staff and patients is paramount. We have worked extremely hard to ensure that when our patients visit us, they do so knowing that they are entering a safe and secure environment. Social distancing will of course apply at the flu clinics. In the months ahead we will also be calling on our patients to help as much as they can to contribute to the success of the flu vaccination programme and we've put together the following information to help."

 

When do the flu clinics start?                         

Appointment dates for the flu clinics start from 21st September. These Flu Clinics will include early morning appointments from 7.30am to 8.30am and also evening appointments from 6pm to 7.40pm. There will also be a series of Saturday afternoon clinics which will start on the 26th September.

 

How Do I Book An Appointment?                                                                              

We expect a very high demand for the vaccine this year.

Texts and notifications will be sent out from the practice confirming your eligibility for the vaccination. Once you receive your text or phone call saying you are eligibale please call us on 01373 301301 after 2pm to make your appointment. Please avoid calling for your Flu Clinic booking first thing in the morning when the call demand is at its peak.

 

Who Is Eligible?                                                                                                           

Invites will be sent out in a staged process over the next few weeks to patients who are eligible for the flu vaccination.

We will be contacting our shielded patients first, together with others who are at high risk, including pregnant women and carers.

Please be aware that the vaccines the practice has available from September will be suitable for the over 65s and under 65s with a long term condition.

The practice will also be contacting patients about Childhood Flu vaccinations not covered by the Schools Programme.  Clinics for these will be available from 12th September.

 

I am over 50 - can I get the flu vaccine?                                                                                            

We order vaccines for our annual flu clinics 9 months before we need them. This means we do not currently have the vaccines for the recently announced over 50s group (or for anticipated additional demand due to COVID-19.)

It is understood that additional vaccines for the 50-64 age group are being arranged by NHS England and we are currently awaiting information and instructions on when and how these vaccines will be available for this specific age group. We do not expect this to happen till January 2021.

Patients who are in the 50-64 year age group will be advised as and when more information becomes available. Patients are asked not to contact the practice regarding the over 50s vaccines. Instead, we will contact you once the practice is able to offer the flu vaccine to this group.

 

What we need patients to do when they are coming for their flu vaccine appointment

As is the current requirement for patients entering the building, please wear a face covering. This may be a face mask, scarf or even a bandana.

Please arrive promptly ten minutes before your appointment time and do not enter the building before this time.

Patients are asked to wear appropriate clothing (ie a t-shirt or short sleeved shirt under an easily removable coat if needed) so that the upper arm is ready for the vaccination before going to see the clinician.

Patients should use the toilet before travelling for their appointment, as it will not be possible to use the toilets at the practice. 

 

If you can no longer attend your appointment

As the practice will be vaccinating large numbers of the town’s population, appointment times will be highly sought after.

If you cannot attend your appointment for whatever reason then please let us know as soon as possible so that the appointment slot can be offered to someone else.

As with all appointments at present, if any patient has a fever, cough or has lost sense of taste or smell then please cancel that appointment.

 

If you usually receive the pneumococcal vaccine....

Unfortunately this year we are unable to offer the pneumococcal vaccine alongside the flu vaccine. Instead, the practice will be holding some special clinics for this. If you are eligible for this vaccine then you will be invited to attend one of the early September clinics.

 

Finally...

"Hopefully all of the above guidelines will help all of our patients," adds Karen. "This year more than ever we are very much relying on the goodwill of our patients and I know that this will be forthcoming. During the next few months we shall of course be regularly updating our patients on developments via our own website, social media platforms and of course the local media outlets."

For more information on the flu vaccination programme please visit our clinic page here.                                                                    

Published: Aug 27, 2020