COVID-19 Vaccination Programme Update – 24th Feb 2021
Our COVID-19 Vaccination Programme at Chancellors Hotel continues to progress extremely smoothly and at pace, with 10,000 patients across the participating practices having now received their first dose of the vaccine.
All of our patients in Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) priority groups 1-5 (i.e. everyone aged 65 and above, plus patients who are “clinically extremely vulnerable”) who have a mobile phone registered with us should have now received a text message inviting them to book a vaccination appointment online.
Those who do not have a mobile phone will not be disadvantaged as we will ring each and every person without a mobile to invite them. This is a process that takes some time, particular as the numbers of patients get much larger as we move down the age groups.
If you are aged 65 and above, and have not already received an invitation, please ring us on 0161 445 9000 and we will be happy to arrange an appointment for you. We ask that you ring after 2pm any weekday for this purpose to allow us to deal with sick patients who need to get through on the phone lines in the earlier part of the day.
We have now moved on to inviting patients from JCVI priority group 6, i.e. individuals aged 16 years to 64 years with underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality. The health conditions included in this group are set out by the government, and are as follows:
- blood cancer (such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma)
- chronic heart disease (and vascular disease)
- chronic respiratory disease, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cystic fibrosis and severe asthma
- chronic kidney disease
- chronic liver disease
- lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as HIV infection, steroid medication, chemotherapy or radiotherapy)
- patients who have had an organ transplant
- patients have had a stroke or a transient ischaemic attack (TIA)
- chronic neurological disease including epilepsy
- people on the learning disability register
- a problem with the spleen, such as sickle cell disease, or those who have had their spleen removed
- morbid obesity (BMI of above 40)
- severe mental illness
At the same time as adults under 65 years with long term conditions, the vaccine will also be offered to unpaid adult carers – those who are in receipt of a carer’s allowance, or those who are the main carer of an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill.
These together consist of an extremely large group of patients which will take us quite some time to work through. We have already started these invitations and, in line with the other JCVI priority groups, we will be inviting this group in age order starting with the oldest. We respectfully ask that patients in this group do not contact us yet as they will all receive their text invitation when it is their turn. If we do not already have a mobile phone number for you on record please let us have this as soon as possible by filling in the following form: barlowmed.com/navigator/change-of-personal-details/
If you wish to check your eligibility for this group please log in to your online access to check your own medical record. If one of the above conditions is listed in your medical history you will automatically be invited as part of JCVI group 6 when we get to your age group. If you have not already signed up for online access please fill in this quick form: /navigator/register-for-online-services/
Important notice for patients with asthma: the JCVI criteria for group 6 includes only patients with severe asthma (using specific criteria which is taken from medical records), so the vast majority of patients with asthma are not included and will be invited in line with their age group instead. Further information regarding this can be found here: asthma.org.uk/explaining-the-vaccination-priority-groups
The order in which we invite patients is strictly set by the government and outside our control so please don’t ask us for the vaccine early, we will invite you as soon as we get to your priority group. JCVI group 6 is extremely large so it is likely to be some time before we are able to invite patients from JCVI group 7 i.e. all those 60 years of age and over, but without any of the health conditions underlined above.
For more information on the NHS priority groups for Covid vaccination please see: www.gov.uk//joint-committee-on-vaccination-and-immunisation-advice-on-priority-groups-for-covid-19-vaccination-30-december-2020
Thank you all for your support and understanding during this unprecedented situation. We understand that many of you are frustrated by delays in accessing services. We are all doing the very best that we can under extremely difficult circumstances as the demands on our service soar at a time when we are attempting to deliver the largest vaccination programme in the country’s history. Please be assured that for the past year and into the future we are all working flat out and well beyond our contracted hours in order to keep our services running.
We are also fully aware of the huge numbers of people on NHS waiting lists awaiting appointments and/or treatments, and how frustrating and distressing this can be. It is thought that approximately 1 in 4 people in Greater Manchester are currently on an NHS waiting list so you are certainly not alone or forgotten. Unfortunately we do not have any influence over hospital waiting times and clinics, and are unable to help with chasing up appointments due to the huge strains on our service. If your appointment is well overdue please contact the hospital service directly to chase this up. Please do not contact us about hospital appointments unless your condition has worsened significantly.
- For more information about the COVID-19 vaccination please see our FAQ factsheet: /practice_news/covid-19-vaccination-faq/
- For more information about what to expect on the day of your COVID-19 vaccination please see this link: /practice_news/your-covid-19-vaccination-appointment/
Barlow Medical Centre