COVID-19 Vaccination Programme Rutland Update 18 January 2021
The national plans for vaccination change frequently. This is the best information that we have at the moment but may be altered.
Rutland Health PCN has now administered the first vaccination to 89.6% of the 2753 patients aged over 80. At least one attempt has been made to contact all patients in this group, and there will be more bookings made this week. Residents of all 11 care homes that our practices look after have been vaccinated, and most of the care home staff.
In parallel to the manual booking system (telephoning patients and, where appropriate, their next of kin), we are also starting to invite some patients aged 77-79 using the automated booking system which sends an SMS to your mobile phone. Using both systems means that we can book more patients and deliver the vaccine in the most effective way. We will contact people who are over 80 in other ways if they cannot use the telephone.
We have over 2000 patients in cohort 3 (aged 75-79 ), and we are dependent of the supply of vaccine (which is improving but remains erratic) so don’t worry if you have not received an invitation to book an appointment – we will be contacting everyone over 75 in the next few weeks. Please do not contact your practice. We are also vaccinating frontline health and care staff whose work means that they have face to face contact with multiple older adults.
We have received deliveries of both the Pfizer BioNtech and Astra Zeneca (Oxford) vaccines and administered them to patients as soon as possible to protect more people.
More information about the Pfizer BioNtech vaccine can be found here
More information about the Astra Zeneca vaccine can be found here
More information about why your appointment is being rescheduled can be found here.
If you have a friend or relative who aged over 80 and is normally housebound but who could be brought to the COVID vaccination centre in Oakham (there are wheelchairs available) please contact us by emailing [email protected] so that we can book them an appointment. We will contact those housebound patients who cannot be brought to the vaccination centre in the next few weeks to arrange their vaccinations once we have received guidance on how we can safely vaccinate people at home.
We will be completing the over 80 patient cohort in the next two weeks and moving to the next grouping providing we receive the vaccine deliveries. Each cohort comprises more than 2000 patients. We are prioritising in age order. If your cohort is being vaccinated and you have not yet received an invitation to book an appointment please be patient; we will contact you. Please do not contact your GP practice.
The national priority list which we must follow is as follows:
- 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
- all those 65 years of age and over
- all individuals aged 16 years to 64 years with underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality. Cohort 6 also includes unpaid carers.
- all those 60 years of age and over
- all those 55 years of age and over
- all those 50 years of age and over
More information about the prioritisation can be found here.
Our clinical IT system has searches built in which will identify a list of patients in each cohort when it the their turn to be vaccinated.
Do not contact your practice – we will contact you.
All vaccinations will be given only by prior appointment – no walk in.
The Rutland Primary Care Network will have frequent updates and frequently asked questions about the Rutland COVID-19 Vaccination Programme. Do not contact your surgery as they will be unable to help you with your COVID-19 Vaccination enquiries.
Click here for NHS information on the coronavirus vaccine.
You will need a second vaccination 12 weeks after the first. The government has told us to protect more people with the first vaccination before giving the second dose.
If your practice has your mobile phone number, information will be sent to you by text message. Please respond to this as soon as possible to secure your appointments. The automated system message sends a link to your smartphone which allows you to book. This does not work with some older phones, so if you are unable to book using the link we will contact you by telephone.
You can click here for a guide on how to use the automated system, for both smart phones and older phones alike.
Unfortunately there are scams and hoaxes coming through. The NHS will NEVER ask for your bank details. The link we send simply takes you to a choice of booking slot.
National vaccination centres
Some patients over 70 may receive a letter from the national NHS offering COVID vaccination at a mass vaccination site . The national system is entirely separate from the Rutland COVID Vaccination Progamme and you will not be able to book into the Rutland vaccination centre in Oakham using the national booking system. Your GP practice has no information about the mass vaccination centres.
You cannot have a vaccination if you:
- have a high temperature or fever
- Had another vaccination within 7 days.
- Have ever had a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) to any of the components of the vaccine or to multiple medications. (this guidance has just changed)
- Are taking warfarin and your INR reading is above 4. If you are taking warfarin please bring your yellow book when you come for your vaccination.
- Have had a positive COVID-19 test within the last 4 weeks.
- Are pregnant, unless you have a serious health condition that puts you at high risk of complications from COVID-19 infection.
For the COVID-19 vaccination guide for women of childbearing age, pregnant, planning a pregnancy or breastfeeding click here.
What happens on the day?
The vaccination centre will be Council Offices, Catmose House, Catmos Road, Oakham, LE15 6HP not your GP surgery. There is adequate free marshalled parking at the site and wheelchair access. There are no toilet facilities available at the site. The nearest toilets are at Church Street, Oakham.
- Wear a face covering.
- Maintain strict safe social distancing of 2m.
- Make sure you are wearing a short sleeve top under your coat as injections will not be given in a private room. You will also need a warm coat.
- All queuing will be outside, don’t forget your umbrella and a warm coat. Queues should be short because we have booked appointment times.
- Your temperature will be checked before you enter the building.
- The vaccinator will ask you some questions.
- The vaccinator will give you an injection into your upper arm.
- If you have received the PfizerBioNtech Vaccine you will be observed for 15 minutes before you are permitted to leave after the vaccination. If you have received the AstraZeneca (Oxford) vaccine you will be able to return to your car but if you are driving yourself, you must not drive for 15 minutes.
- If you can, the best way to travel to the vaccination centre is by private car. Alternative transport options are available here.
Where can I find more information?
For the COVID-19 vaccination guide for older adults click here.
For the COVID-19 vaccination guide for social care staff click here.
For information on what to expect after your COVID-19 vaccination click here.
What should I do now?
- Let us know using this form if you do not want to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Vaccination is the best way to protect yourself, your family and your community. You do not need to let us know that you want the vaccination – your practice will contact you. You can post the form to your practice or email to [email protected].
– Click here for the COVID-19 consent form for adults able to consent.
– Click here for the consent forms for adults living in care homes including those who have appointed a power of attorney.
- If you have a mobile phone number or email address that your practice doesn’t know, please let us know by visiting your surgery website and informing us. The information about the vaccination programme changes every day and this is the fastest way to keep you up to date. Your appointment will be offered by SMS if we have your mobile number.
- Let us know if you are over 80 and have additional needs, for example if you will need a wheelchair or additional help by emailing [email protected].
Rutland Health PCN is extremely grateful to the volunteers that are supporting us. If you would like to help with the vaccination programme please email [email protected] who are co-ordinating volunteers for all the vaccination sites. We have some volunteers helping with marshalling the car park, checking patients in, booking appointments, and data entry , as well as some retired clinical staff who help with the vaccinations after training and accreditation.
Information about the Council Offices in Oakham:
- The full address is – Council Offices, Catmose House, Catmos Road, Oakham, LE15 6HP.
- There is free parking on-site
- There will be Marshalls on site to help direct cars and people on the day.
- There will be on-site reception for booking people in.
- There will be clear signs and Marshalls on hand who will show you where to go to have your vaccination and how to exit the building.
- The building has wheelchair access and exit.
- There will be experienced trained healthcare professionals from local practices in Rutland on-site supervised by a GP who will look after you from start to finish. In the unlikely event of an allergic reaction there will be anaphylaxis kits and a defibrillator available.
- We will maintain social distancing and ensure you receive your vaccine safely and swiftly.
- Please arrive promptly at your appointment time to prevent delays. Do not arrive more than 5 minutes before your appointment time.
Will the vaccine have side effects?
- Like all medicines, vaccines can cause side effects. Most of these are mild and short-term, and not everyone gets them.
- Even if you do have symptoms after the first dose, you still need to have the second dose.
- Although you may get some protection from the first dose, having the second dose will give you the best protection against the virus.
- Very common side effects include:
- Having a painful, heavy feeling and tenderness in the arm where you had your injection. This tends to be worst around 1-2 days after the vaccine
- General aches, or mild flu like symptoms
- Fever. Although feeling feverish is not uncommon for two to three days, a high temperature is unusual and may indicate you have COVID-19 or another infection. You can rest and take the normal dose of paracetamol (follow the advice in the packaging) to help you feel better. Symptoms following vaccination normally last less than a week.
Can I choose which vaccine I receive?
We cannot offer you a choice of vaccine because we receive intermittent limited supplies and we are instructed who to give them to.
I have had the flu vaccine; do I need the COVID-19 vaccine as well?
- The flu vaccine does not protect you from COVID-19
- As you are eligible for both vaccines you can have both but should be separated by at least a week.
Can I catch COVID-19 from the vaccine?
No this is not possible symptoms seem to get worse or if you are concerned, call NHS 111.
Can I transmit or pass on the COVID-19 infection to anyone after I had the vaccine?
- The vaccine will not give you COVID-19 infection
- We do not know yet if the vaccine will stop you catching the virus and passing it on.
- What we do know is that if you did catch the virus, the vaccine will protect you and significantly lower the chance of you becoming unwell with it.
Does the COVID-19 vaccine contain animal products or gluten?
The vaccine is Animal free, Gluten free, Potassium free and Sodium free
When will unpaid carers receive the vaccination?
The Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisation (JVCI), which is responsible for prioritising which order groups get the vaccine, has updated its guidance (add link) to include unpaid carers. If you are a carer for another person, you will be invited to receive the vaccine as part of group 6 (click here for information on Priority Groups). It important therefore that your GP surgery knows (by email) that you are a carer, so that the invitation can be sent to you at the appropriate time
Do I need to bring my NHS number?
If you can bring your NHS number it is helpful, but not essential.
How are you prioritising frontline health and care staff?
Care home staff are the first priority. We are also prioritising those frontline health and care staff who have frequent face to face contact with multiple older people, such as carers providing personal care, vaccination centre and primary care staff. Staff working in hospitals and for large NHS community providers have access to vaccination through their employer.
Frontline health and care staff
Frontline health and social care staff may be eligible for vaccination. We are prioritising care home staff, and those who have direct face to face contact with multiple older adults and whose work means that they cannot social distance (for example providing personal care such as helping someone with washing and dressing). Other groups of staff are also eligible and we will be working through eligible groups on a priority basis., Your employer will advise how the vaccine can be accessed. You will need to provide some evidence that your role meets the priority criteria. The government has identified eligible workers and we do not have the flexibility to include other key workers. Carers providing care to one person are included in priority group 6.
Am I safe once I have had the vaccination?
Your body’s defence against the Covid-19 virus will gradually increase over the next few weeks, and will be boosted by your 2nd dose at 12 weeks. It is essential that you continue to be careful by washing your hands frequently, wearing a face covering over your nose and mouth, and maintaining social distancing, until you are fully protected.
Rescheduling your second coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine appointment
Due to new advice from the UK Chief Medical Officers, we are writing to inform you that we need to reschedule your second coronavirus vaccination appointment. The new medical advice is that the second dose of the vaccine remains effective when given up to 12 weeks after the first dose, and should be given towards the end of this 12 week period.
While you will need two doses of the vaccine to get the best long-term protection from the virus, you will still have a significant level of protection at 22 days after you received the first dose. The new guidance will also help ensure that as many people as possible benefit from the first dose of the vaccine as soon as possible. Please be reassured that there are no safety concerns in the new guidance, and it will not impact on how effective the vaccination is in protecting you from COVID-19 once the course is complete.
You do not need to call us. We will contact you to reschedule your second vaccine appointment. This could be by letter, text or phone. If you have a mobile phone and have given your surgery your number, please would you do so. If you have received an SMS messages from us we do have your number and you do not need to take any action.
It is important to note that even when you have received your vaccine, you must continue to follow government guidance on social distancing and wearing a mask, as well as the additional measures in place in your area.
We apologise for any inconvenience, and look forward to seeing you for your second vaccine dose at the right time.
For more information on the vaccine, please visit here.
If you feel you need further information about the contents of this letter, you can call 0116 2957572
Listen to Dr Hilary Fox talk about Rutland Primary Health Care Network’s COVID-19 vaccination programme on Rob Persani’s podcast here:
Link to Rob Persani’s podcast