As we are now in the throes of our Flu vaccination season, we felt it might be a good time to explain some of the things that are different this year.
When are our vaccines ordered?
Our flu vaccinations were ordered in August last year.
We ordered enough to vaccinate all patients that were eligible for the vaccine at that time.
We pay for these vaccines and if we don’t use the vaccine by the end of February, we have to throw them away.
Is it true that healthy 50-64 year olds or Shielding patients should be given a Flu Vaccination?
This year, the Government announced that vaccines will be available for ‘extra’ groups of patients (those aged between 50 and 64 and Shielding patients and their families).
We are really pleased that we can offer this group of patients a vaccine but unfortunately we haven’t received the vaccines from NHS England yet. Please look out for a text, posters in our window, our website and Facebook page.
In the meantime, we first have to vaccinate the patients that we ordered for in August 2019. These are:
- Adults aged 65 and over
- People with some medical conditions including diabetes, heart failure and asthma
- Other patients who were required to shield from Coronavirus
- Pregnant women
- Children aged between two and four
- Health and Social Care Workers
When did your clinics start and are there more clinics this year?
Our first flu clinics are held the day after we receive the vaccines.
This year, our campaign started on 14th September.
In addition, normally at a Flu clinic, we vaccinate one patient every minute. This year, due to Covid, we have to schedule 3 minutes per patient so each clinic is seeing far less patients; this is so that we can maintain social distancing and do not have too many patients in the building at any time.
Why did my 80 year old neighbour get their vaccine in September but I have to wait until November?
This is because there are two different types of vaccine. One for Under 65’s and one for Over 65’s. They come from different manufacturers and will have been delivered at different times.
Finally, thank you for being so patient with us this year.
We know it has been confusing and it may feel as though we are being unhelpful by not booking your vaccination or not letting you wait in the waiting room. Although we are open, we need to make sure that we do not have too many patients in the waiting room at any time so that we can maintain social distancing.
The Practice is a place where the people who visit are sick, frail or elderly and we must do everything we can to keep you all safe.
Thank you for your understanding.