The NHS has rolled out COVID-19 vaccinations in GP surgeries across the UK.
People are being invited to have their COVID vaccination in order of national guidance, starting with patients aged over 80, care home residents and their staff, plus healthcare workers. You do not need to call the surgery, you will be contacted by our vaccination booking team as soon as we are able to offer you the vaccination. Please understand that the patient numbers in these age groups is high and therefore the booking of appointments will take time.
We are currently inviting patients from the first FOUR cohorts and Patients from cohort SIX and there are a number of ways we will invite those patients for a COVID vaccination. The current cohorts being invited are:
- Residents in a care home for older adults and their carers
- All those 80 years of age and over and frontline health and social care workers
- All those 75 years of age and over
- All those 70 years of age and over, and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals
- Patients who are clinically vulnerable as those with
- chronic respiratory disease, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cystic fibrosis and severe asthma
- chronic heart disease (and vascular disease)
- chronic kidney disease
- chronic liver disease
- chronic neurological disease including epilepsy
- Down’s syndrome
- severe and profound learning disability
- solid organ, bone marrow and stem cell transplant recipients
- people with specific cancers
- immunosuppression due to disease or treatment
- asplenia and splenic dysfunction
- morbid obesity
- severe mental illness
- younger adults in long-stay nursing and residential care settings
- adult carers (those in receipt of a carer’s allowance or who are the sole or primary carer of a person who is at high risk from COVID, you maybe required to produce either evidence of carers allowance, register with west sussex Carers support or Gov.uk )
If you are in one of the five cohorts and you have not heard from the surgery, please contact us.
If you are aged 60 years or over and do not full into Corhorts 1, 2, 3, 4 or 6:
We kindly ask patients to book their vaccination via the national booking service. You do not need to wait for a letter to book this appointment. The website address is www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination . Anyone unable to book online can call 119 free of charge, anytime between 7am and 11pm seven days a week. For those who are able to travel to the vaccination centres, these patients can choose from more than 100 large scale vaccination centres or almost 200 pharmacy services. Currently GP led vaccination sites will focus initially on the clinically vulnerable from cohort 6 because of the relationship between general practice and those with long term conditions, and continuity of care. We would encourage where possible for you to use the national vaccination sites however if you are unable to get to one of these sites, then please be patient whilst we concentrate on the clinically vulnerable. If and when we have available vaccines to accommodate Cohort 5 text messages will be sent to those who have not been vaccinated. Thank you, goodbye.
However if you are unable to get to one of these site, then please be patient whilst we concentrate on the clinically vulnerable. Once we are able to accommodate your cohort, text messages will be sent to those who have not been vaccinated.
If you are not in one of the 6 cohorts above, please see below.
If and when eligible you will be contacted by text message which will have a link for an online booking system. For those who do not have mobile phone, unable to book or prefer not to receive text messages, you will be called by the COVID Vaccination Booking Team, managed by an organisation called Innovations in Primary Care. Your ‘Caller ID’ may show “Unknown” or “No Number” when the team try to ring you so please bear this in mind when answering your phone. When you receive a call from the COVID Vaccination Booking Team, we ask all patients to ensure they make themselves available to accept the appointment offered to them. This is not a normal GP service so we cannot be flexible when offering appointments for the COVID vaccination as we would in other clinics. In order to ensure we get everyone booked in, we need you to be available to attend the appointment offered to you. If you decline an appointment, you may not be contacted again for a while so it is vitally important you make yourself available when you receive the invite. Also note that the booking team will NEVER ask you for payment for the vaccination, or ask you to press numbers on your phone to confirm the appointment. If someone asks you to do this, hang up immediately.
Vaccination clinics are created as soon as we receive notification from NHS England that we are scheduled for a delivery. Deliveries can come once a week, or twice a week, but we only find out what we are receiving a few days in advance of the scheduled delivery date. Deliveries are made between 8:00am and 6:30pm – we have no control over the time deliveries will arrive. As we do not have a static day of delivery each week, clinics are booked on the days following delivery and therefore could be scheduled on any days of the week. There continue to be supply issues around the country and some GP surgeries have not received scheduled vaccine deliveries at all. We hope this will not happen here but we need our patients to be aware that there is a risk this may happen.
It’s very important for people to note that Willow Green is also still operating as a GP surgery. The volume of calls to reception concerning COVID vaccinations is preventing patients getting through who need to speak with a GP or other clinician regarding their healthcare needs. It is imperative that patients refrain from calling the surgery regarding the COVID vaccination – you will be called when it is your turn to be invited. The same applies to email and eConsult – we will not respond to emails or eConsults from people asking when they will be invited. We are not able to provide any other guidance on vaccinations but patients can visit the NHS West Sussex CCG website at www.westsussexccg.nhs.uk for more information.
We absolutely understand this is a frightening and worrying time for everyone. The patients are our priority and we are working as fast as we can to get the vaccine out to you. With your help we can ensure we get everyone vaccinated as quickly as is possible. And you can help by doing the following:
- Please be patient whilst the booking team work through the thousands of patients to be invited in each government group;
- Please accept a COVID vaccination appointment when you are offered one, and turn up for it no earlier than 5 minutes before your booked time;
- Please keep the telephone lines clear by not chasing the team for appointments.
We sincerely thank you for your patience and understanding.
Key messages for the public:
- The NHS will let you know when it’s your turn to have the vaccine. It’s important not to contact your GP surgery for a vaccination before then.
- Please act on your invite when it comes, and make sure you attend your appointments.
- You will be invited for a first dose, and later will be booked in for a second dose 12 weeks after receiving the first dose.
- When it’s your time to be invited, you will be telephoned by our COVID 19 Vaccination Booking Team. They will never ask you for a payment or your bank details – please do not give any financial information to anyone regarding COVID vaccinations.
- All the while COVID-19 in in our communities it is important to follow the guidelines and remember Hands, Face, Space. It will save lives and help the NHS.
For more information on the COVID-19 vaccination programme in Sussex visit: www.sussexhealthandcare.uk/keepsussexsafe/sussex-covid-19-vaccination-programme
As the vaccine hubs rolls out vaccines, a key reminder of 3 things:
1.The NHS will contact you when it’s your turn, so please do not contact your GP beforehand.
2. Please act on your invite when it comes, and do not arrive more than 5 minutes prior to your allocated time.
3. Remember Hands, Face, Space. It will save lives and help the NHS.
If you have a new mobile number that the surgery may not be aware of, please go to https://www.willowgreensurgery.co.uk/your-record/keep-us-up-to-date/communication-consent-form/