Coronavirus Vaccinations - Latest Updates

We are providing Covid-19 vaccinations at Bridge Health Centre for  patients and those from the following practices within our Primary Care Network (PCN):

  • Canterbury Medical Practice (Bridge, Cossington, Littlebourne & London Road)
  • New Dover Road Surgery
  • University Medical Centre

We are inviting patients based on the national priority list. Please be patient and wait to be contacted about when the vaccine is available for you. There will be home visits for patients who have no means of attending their practice.

Please read the questions and answers below about our local vaccination service. Our phone lines are very busy; please help us to keep lines open for people needing to make appointments for other health matters.

UPDATE 08.04.21

Please see below for a link to updated  information about the Astra-Zeneca vaccine - more information to follow as it is cascaded to us from NHSE/I 

 

UPDATE 05.04.21

We are continuing to invite cohorts 6-9  to attend for their first vaccination and are also inviting patients from cohorts 1-4 to attend for thier second dose but this is always dependent on deliveries and we had a slight pause over the Easter weekend but clinics start again on Friday 9th April.

We have had a few people not turn up for their appointments (rest assured no vaccine has been wasted) but if you have a booked appointment and have already had a vaccine- please cancel so someone else can take that space as we all want this vaccine program to work as quickly and efficiently as possible to get us all vaccinated.

The practice is working hard on this vaccination campaign whilst also maintaining other services, please remember to be kind to staff. 

To date Canterbury South PCN has administered 12,300 doses of covid vaccines and vaccinated 84.7% of their cohorts of patients 1-9. Thank you to all who have attended and for anyone who still wants a first dose within cohorts 1-6 who may have declined initially, but would like a first dose please contact us. 

As of 22nd March we are currently inviting those groups highlighted in red below: 

  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 aged between 75 -79 years of age
  4. All those aged between 70-74 years of age and over and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals 
  5. All those aged between 65- 69 years of age
  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 aged between 60 -64 years of age
  8. All those aged between 55- 59 years of age
  9. All those aged between 50 - 54 years of age

UPDATE 12.03.21

Please note we are continuing our vaccine clinics as below and Thank all our patients for awaiting our call to invite you to the appropriate clinic session.

The inital groups, groups 1 to 4, that is, the elderly, housebound, nursing home residents etc, have had their first vaccines at our designated site at Bridge Health Centre and we are now starting to contact these groups for their second doses. 

We are still working through our cohorts of patients and are currently focusing on group 6 at present (16 to 65 year olds WITH qualifying medical conditions)

However, please note if you are over 60 OR in an at risk group you can book a vaccination online here

For those able to travel to a mass vaccination centre we would recommend taking this option as your quickest and simplest route to vaccination.

It is likely the GP based vaccination service will continue to focus on the very elderly, the clinically vulnerable, and those with complex needs which make them unsuitable to be vaccinated at the mass vaccination centre. 

Please watch the national website for updates on when mass vaccination booking is opened up to groups 8 and 9 (over age 55, and over 50 respectively). 

Which priority group are you currently inviting?

As of 11th March 2021 we are currently inviting those groups highlighted in red below: 

  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 aged between 75 -79 years of age
  4. All those aged between 70-74 years of age and over and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals 
  5. All those aged between 65- 69 years of age
  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 aged between 60 -64 years of age
  8. All those aged between 55- 59 years of age
  9. All those aged between 50 - 54 years of age

 

UPDATE 01.03.21

Please be aware - if you are in cohort 5 you will have received a national letters inviting you to use the National Booking Service to have the vaccine at either a vaccination centre or a community pharmacy. You do not need to contact the Surgery regarding this booking.

We are focusing on cohort 6, as instructed and we have over 2000 patients to contact. We ask that you do not call us to chase your vaccine, as this causes huge pressure on our already busy phone lines. Be rest assured, when we are ready to vaccinate you, you will be contacted  via text or we will call you.

Please also note, if you are booked for a covid vaccine with us but you cannot attend, please do let us know. We have experienced a few patients who did not notify us of their cancellation which places pressure on staff to book at the last minute to avoid vaccine wastage.

We are preparing for our next clinics and awaiting further information for when our next deliveries will be.

Please keep an eye on our website  for updates.

Which priority group are you currently inviting?

As of 1st March 2021 we are currently inviting those groups highlighted in red below: 

  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 aged between 75 -79 years of age
  4. All those aged between 70-74 years of age and over and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals 
  5. All those aged between 65- 69 years of age
  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 aged between 60 -64 years of age
  8. All those aged between 55- 59 years of age
  9. All those aged between 50 - 54 years of age

UPDATE 15.02.21

Apologies for the delay in updates as you can see we have been busy vaccinating and are pleased to announce we have offered vaccines to all Cohorts 1-4 at CMP and visited all our care homes and the majority of our housebound patients, which we hope to complete this week.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q. Should supermarket staff be vaccinated? They see hundreds of different people every day who could be spreading Covid-19 with no symptoms and then go home to their families.

A. We understand that many people are anxious and keen to get the vaccine as soon as possible so both they and their loved ones are protected from the virus.

Supermarket staff provide a vital role. However vaccination teams have to follow the guidance and rules that are set out for us by the NHS. Vaccinations are being delivered according to priority groups identified by the Joint Committee of Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).

The JCVI states the priority is to minimise Covid-19 deaths as much as possible and to protect our health and social care staff and systems. Evidence shows the older you are the more at risk you are from COVID-19 so the vaccination rollout to patients is based on age.

Q. What priority groups are being vaccinated at present?

A. Locally, we have been working incredibly hard to roll out the vaccination programme and we reached the target of offering first doses of the vaccine to everyone in the top four priority groups and those that for whatever reason could not have a vaccine will be offered again.

This includes care home residents and staff, residents over 70, frontline health and social care staff and people who have been shielding and classed as clinically extremely vulnerable.

Q. When are vaccinations for the over 65s likely to start?

A. This has already started and residents over 65yrs will be invited by NHS England to be vaccinated and they can also attend our local vaccination centre at Bridge Health Centre.

Please be reassured that you will be contacted when it is your turn to book your vaccination.

Some practices will call and some will send a text – please remember that the NHS does not charge for the vaccination.

Q. Why are we vaccinating young health care workers before clinically vulnerable?

A. Patient-facing health and social care staff have been prioritised because they are more at risk of exposure to the virus. Also, protecting health and social care staff from the virus, also helps to protect the people they care for too.

We are pleased to say that many local healthcare workers have already been vaccinated, which will protect our vulnerable patients. These staff will still need to be thinking ‘hands, face, space’ at all times, wearing the correct PPE and washing their hands regularly.

In Canterbury, many clinically extremely vulnerable people have already been vaccinated, but if you believe you should have been vaccinated already, please contact the practice and ask them to double check your medical records.

Q. Why is there nothing in place for shielding people’s families? They have to go to work every day with the fear of bringing the virus home.

A. We understand it has been a worrying time for anyone who is shielding or their families, but all local patients who are clinically extremely vulnerable should now have been offered an appointment for a vaccination.

If you are still waiting for a vaccination appointment, please contact your GP practice. As stated above, the decisions about who should be prioritised for vaccinations are made nationally, and at the moment people living in a household with those who are extremely clinically vulnerable are not included in the top priority groups– although in some cases family members may be eligible in their own right.

Q. I am classed as vulnerable person who suffers from type-2 diabetes and chronic pain. How long will it be before I am contacted?

A. Please be reassured that you will be contacted very soon. We are trying to get through each priority group as quickly as we can.

Please make sure you look after yourself, follow the national rules and of course think about ‘hands, face, space’ at all times.

Q. Why are we not vaccinating teachers and kids so they can return to school?

A. This is not a decision that is made at a local level in Canterbury

The NHS is currently prioritising vaccinating those people who leading national experts (JCVI) have agreed will benefit from it the most.

We are totally committed to vaccinating all groups that we are able to as swiftly as possible, and this includes planning as groups such as this when the time comes.

Q. When will people who look after their vulnerable partner get their vaccine?

A. Vaccination centres have to follow the rules that are set out for us by the NHS.

Many people who are unpaid workers looking after loved ones will fall into priority group six (adults in at risk groups and carers).

We are moving to vaccinate priority group five and six (people 65 and over) and those at risk and carers from this week.

 

No. of Covid-19 Vaccine Doses administered across Canterbury South PCN from 21st December 2020 to 14th February 2021= 6030 doses

 

The order in which the vaccination programme will be rolled out in Canterbury:

As of the week commencing 1st March we are currently inviting patients in Group 6 for their COVID vaccination.

 

Please see below a few images taken during our COVID-19 Vaccination Programme: 


UPDATE 14.01.21

Which priority group are you currently inviting?

As of 14th January 2021 we are currently inviting those highlighted in red below: 

  • 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 
  • All those 60 years of age and over 
  • All those 55 years of age and over 
  • All those 50 years of age and over

How are you contacting people to invite them for a vaccine?

We are contacting patients by telephone mostly and will send letters to those we are unable to get hold of

If I cannot attend an appointment what should I do?

If you have received and accepted an invitation for a Covid-19 vaccine we would strongly encourage you to prioritise coming to the appointment. If for unavoidable reasons you cannot make it please call your surgery to cancel so that we can invite someone else.

There will be home visits for housebound patients and care homes. We are inviting patients based on the national priority list. Please be patient and wait to be contacted about when the vaccine is available for you.

You do not need to contact the surgery until you receive a letter, text or phone call about getting the Covid-19 vaccine. Our phone lines are very busy; please help us to keep lines open for people needing to make appointments for other health matters.

The vaccination programme will take several months to work through everyone, so it could be some time before you are contacted. If you would like to find out more information about the Kent and Medway vaccination programme please click here

 

In the meantime, it is as important as ever to maintain social distancing, handwashing and wearing face coverings in public spaces.

 

You should be vaccinated if you are: 

  • an adult living or working in a care home for the elderly
  • a frontline healthcare worker
  • a frontline social care worker
  • a carer working in domiciliary care looking after older adults
  • aged 65 years and over
  • younger adults with long-term clinical conditions (see conditions below)

The vaccine will also be offered to adults with conditions such as:

  • a blood cancer (such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma)
  • diabetes
  • dementia
  • a heart problem
  • a chest complaint or breathing difficulties, including bronchitis, emphysema or severe asthma
  • a kidney disease
  • a liver disease
  • lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as HIV infection, steroid medication, chemotherapy or radiotherapy)
  • rheumatoid arthritis, lupus or psoriasis
  • liver disease
  • have had an organ transplant
  • had a stroke or a transient ischaemic attack (TIA)
  • a neurological or muscle wasting condition
  • a severe or profound learning disability
  • a problem with your spleen, example sickle cell disease, or having had your spleen removed
  • are seriously overweight (BMI of 40 and above)
  • are severely mentally ill

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About The Vaccine

The vaccine is given in two doses three months apart. You may not be protected until at least seven days after your second dose of vaccine. The vaccine is given as an injection into the muscle of your upper arm.

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
  • feeling tired
  • headache
  • general aches, or mild flu like symptoms

Please click here for more information about the vaccine. 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I come for a vaccine if I have symptoms of Covid-19?

  • No. If you or someone in your immediate household has symptoms of the virus it is essential that you self-isolate and book a test. Your vaccine can be re-arranged after your self-isolation.

If I’ve had Covid-19 do I need the vaccines?

  • Yes, getting vaccinated is just as important for those who have already had Covid-19 as it is for those who haven’t.

How soon after having Covid-19 can I have the vaccine?

  • It is recommended that people wait 4 weeks after recovering from Covid-19 or from being tested positive but not experiencing symptoms. We will rearrange invitations if you are in this situation when first invited to have the vaccine.

When will the second dose be given?

  • From 30 December the national guidance changed and second doses will now be scheduled for 10-12 weeks after the first dose.

Can I pay for the vaccines privately?

  • No, all Covid-19 vaccines are being provided free by the NHS. If you see any offers to get the vaccine privately it will be a scam and you must not contact them.

 

 

Published: Dec 9, 2020

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