The COVID-19 Vaccination Programme: key points

The COVID-19 vaccination programme is underway. 

 If you are 70 years of age or older and have not yet received your first vaccination please contact us.  You only need to do this if you are a registered patient with us and if we have not already been in touch with you regarding the vaccine.  Or, if you have previously declined the vaccine and have changed your mind.

COVID-19 Vaccine Scam Warning

The vaccine is only available through the NHS and it is free of charge.  The NHS will never ask you for your bank account or card details.  The NHS will never ask you for your PIN or banking password.  the NHS will never arrive unannounced at your home to administer the vaccine.  The NHS will never ask you to prove your identity by sending copies of personal documents (such as your passport, dirving licence, bills or pay slips).  

If you believe a call to be fraudlent hang-up.  If you are suspicious about an email you have received, forward it to report@phishing.gov.uk. Suspiscious text messages should be forwarded to the number 7726 which is free of charge.

We are aware of a number of scams currently.  For example, there is a genuine NHS system called 'NIMS' (National Immunisation Management System).  As a system NIMS is not phoning anyone to make enquiries about the vaccine.  Please terminate the call if you receive a call where a person reports that they are calling you from 'NIMS'. 

If you are under 70 years of age  Please do not contact us, we will contact you as soon as we can.

Information on the vaccine is available on the NHS.UK website

Do we have a mobile contact number for you? 

It is likely that we will send out text messages to notify you about the vaccine.  If you have a mobile and have not provided us with your number please e-mail it to us at: info@westburysurgery.com 

How do I get a vaccine?

We will contact you. When we contact you, please act quickly and attend your booked appointments.  Please continue to follow all the guidance - hand hygiene and social distancing in particular - to control the virus and save lives. 

When you have an appointment booked for the vaccine please read the below before attending

Covid vaccination: a guide for adults

We are working as a network of six GP Practices in North Bristol.  Therefore, the vaccine will be administered at the Greenway Community Centre.  Please use the below link to take you to a helpful video about what to expect when you arrive for your vaccination

https://www.southmead.org/community-covid19-vaccination-hub/

We have tried to answer some of your questions below.  Please be aware that we are not able to book appointments with clinicians to answer individual queries. 

When will I get the vaccine?

Staff are working tirelessly to ensure the necessary measures are in place for those most at risk to get their vaccine first. To do this, we are following a nationally set prioritisation order, from which we are unable to deviate.

The priority list from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation is as follows:

  1. residents in a care home for older adults and their carers*
  2. all those 80 years of age and over and frontline health and social care workers**
  3. all those 75 years of age and over
  4. all those 70 years of age and over and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals
  5. all those 65 years of age and over
  6. all individuals aged 16 years to 64 years with underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality
  7. all those 60 years of age and over
  8. all those 55 years of age and over
  9. all those 50 years of age and over

*Please note that 'carers' in this context refers to care home staff. If you are a personal or family carer you will be vaccinated within your age-related or clinically vulnerable group if that applies to you.

**Please note that frontline health and social care workers should contact their employer about getting their vaccination, not their registered GP surgery.

It is estimated that taken together, these groups represent around 99% of preventable mortality from COVID-19.

I've received a letter about booking my vaccination appointment - what should I do?

Letters are being sent inviting patients to book a vaccine appointment via the NHS website or by ringing 119. This being done by age cohort, in line with the JCVI guidance. This is an invitation to book an appointment at a mass vaccination centre - our local one is Ashton Gate stadium, local pharmacies are also participating. You can do this by following the instructions in the letter. You do not need to do this if:

  • You would prefer to get your vaccine at the practice. We can assure you that we have your details so you don't need to contact us - we will contact you when it's your turn.
  • You already have an appointment booked with your practice to get your vaccine.
  • You have already had your first dose with the practice - we'll contact you when it's time to come in for your second.

If you are unable to book an appointment using the details in the letter, don't worry. We have your details and we will contact you to invite you for an appointment very soon.

I'm in an eligible cohort. Should I call the practice if I haven't heard anything?

While a vaccination programme of this scale will take some time, we can assure you that everyone who needs the vaccine will be offered it. We ask that you don’t contact your practice directly – we will contact you when it is your turn to be vaccinated.

Why haven't I had my vaccine when others the same age already have?

All the GP surgeries in our area are now offering the vaccine to their eligible patients. Staff have been working tirelessly to get this up and running over the last month but the scale of the vaccination programme means that this could not happen in every GP surgery at once. This is the same across the country. If you are in an eligible cohort and you haven't yet heard from us, you do not need to contact us directly. We can assure you we have your details and we will contact you when it's your turn.

When will I get my second dose?

The NHS is following new guidance from the Government’s expert advisors which says that prioritising a first dose for as many people as possible will save more lives. This is because even with just one dose the vaccine has been estimated to offer at least 74% effectiveness from two weeks after it is given. 

Therefore, as a key part of the national effort to protect as many people in at-risk groups as quickly as possible, second doses will now be delivered in the 12th week following your first dose. We will be in touch to schedule your second dose appointment soon. Please can we kindly request that you do not contact us to request an appointmetn for your second dose.  We will contact you. 

When will the next cohorts be vaccinated?

We are making great progress in vaccinating our patients.  Everyone over the age of 70 has now been offered a vaccine. This includes patients who can visit the practice, as well as those who need the vaccine in their home or care home.  

I have a question about the COVID vaccine - what should I do?

There is lots of information available online.  You can also try nhs.uk/covid-vaccination. We will get in touch with you when it is your turn to be vaccinated - you do not need to contact us to ask when this will be. 

Published: Mar 1, 2021

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