135 High Street, Stevenage, Herts SG1 3HT Emperors Gate, Stevenage, Herts SG2 7QX

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NHS

Telephone: King George - 01438 361111 Manor House - 01438 742639

Out of Hours: 111

COVID-19 Vaccinations – Updated Information

Posted on April 9th, 2021

Please note – if you are in Cohorts 1-9 (over 50, or over 18 and Clinically Extremely Vulnerable or Clinically Vulnerable) and have not yet had your 1st dose vaccine – please call us – we have spaces within our clinics for the AstraZeneca vaccine on 22nd and 29th April 2021 at Roebuck Surgery.

Those patients aged under 30 years and in the above groups that have not yet had a vaccine will be contacted by Hertfordshire Community Trust directly for vaccination at Robertson House.

Patients aged under 30 who have already had a 1st dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine are advised to continue with their 2nd dose as planned.

Patients should contact us in the 10th week after their 1st vaccine if they have not heard about their 2nd dose.

Patients from Manor House who had their 1st dose at St Nicholas Surgery will be contacted and will receive their 2nd dose at St Nicholas Surgery also.

  Please keep an eye on our website for further updates in due course.

Updated 20th April 2021

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GPs in Stevenage are working hard to vaccinate everyone in the priority groups. In conjunction with our Primary Care Network colleagues – we are now booking patients aged 16-64 with underlying health conditions for vaccinations at Roebuck Surgery – please call us to book in. You will be booked for your first vaccine, and will be able to book your second nearer the time it is due (12 weeks after your first).

At the moment our focus is on people aged 16-64 with specific health conditions which put them at higher risk of becoming seriously ill with COVID as well as those people who we know are Carers who are eligible to be vaccinated. We are inviting people as quickly as we can, based on the vaccine supplies available to us. If you fall into one of these categories, we will be contacting you over the next fortnight once we have been allocated our vaccine stocks. We will also soon start to invite our more elderly patients in for their second dose.

There are some weeks when we are not receiving as much supply of the vaccine as we would like, due to national supply constraints. We know this has led to some longer waits than we would like to see for our patients.  If you or someone you care for is eligible for a vaccination and is very concerned about waiting to be called, you can try to book online at  https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus- vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/  or dial 119 to see if an alternative vaccination centre has any appointments.

There is currently a high demand for appointments through this route which may mean that you have to travel further to get an appointment until national vaccine supplies increase. There are vaccination centres at the following locations in east and north Hertfordshire:

  • Robertson House, Stevenage
  • Chells Manor Community Centre, Stevenage
  • Da Vinci former grammar school, Letchworth
  • Avanti Meadows Primary School, Bishop’s Stortford
  • The Priory, Ware
  • Roche Pharmaceuticals, Welwyn Garden City

If these options do not appear for you, this means that all their appointments are currently booked up. More appointment slots do get added so check back regularly. There are also vaccination sites in west Hertfordshire, Essex and Bedfordshire that may be closer to where you live.

Letters are now being sent from NHS England to people aged over 50, inviting them to arrange an appointment online using the national booking website. If you are aged over 50, but do not have any underlying health conditions but you would prefer to receive your vaccination with us at our GP hub at Roebuck Surgery you will need to be patient and wait for us to call you. Like all local vaccination services provided by GPs, our hub is not on the national booking site; it is managed by practice staff who will either call you or send you a text message.  As soon as we have vaccinated everyone in the earlier priority groups (those with underlying health conditions) and we have enough vaccine to move on to the next group, we will be in contact with over 50s.

We are expecting our vaccine supplies to GP hubs to increase considerably from the middle of March so we hope to be able to call in many more people after that – for their first and second doses, in line with national guidance about priority groups and the recommended interval between doses. Please be assured that nobody who is due a second dose will have to wait longer than 12 weeks for it.

Everyone aged 50+ can now book online via the National Booking Service

Are you or a family member in one of these groups? Take control. Book your first COVID vaccination now.

If you:

  • are aged 50 or over
  • are a frontline health and social care worker

please, book today to have your potentially life-saving vaccination. Visit: www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination

The national booking service allows you to arrange an appointment at a vaccination centre or community pharmacy-led service. Call 119 if you don’t have the internet. You can choose a time slot and location that suits you.

If it isn’t possible for you to attend any of the vaccination centres offered through the national booking service, then get in touch with the practice and we will offer you an appointment at our GP-led vaccination centre instead.

Vaccinations for people with learning disabilities and their Carers

The local NHS plans to vaccinate all adults (aged 16 and over) with a learning disability and their Carers by the end of February.

Our surgery is contacting people with learning disabilities and/or their Carers on their behalf, to arrange an appointment to have their first COVID-19 vaccine. If you have not been contacted and believe you should be registered with us as having a learning disability, please contact the practice to discuss this.

Family Carers of adults with a learning disability are also eligible for a vaccine. This can be arranged at the same time as booking the appointment for the person with learning disabilities.

There is more information on vaccinations for people with learning disabilities and their Carers on this NHS website: https://www.healthierfuture.org.uk/covid/coronavirus-information-for-people-with-learning-disabilities

Vaccinations for people aged 16-64 with specified underlying health conditions

Vaccinations are now being offered to people aged 16-64 with specified underlying health conditions, sometimes called ‘clinically at risk’. If you have one of the identified health conditions please contact us to book in.

The list of conditions included in this list has been decided nationally by the joint committee on vaccinations and immunisations (JCVI). This is based on your risk of suffering serious illness if you get coronavirus – it is not about how unwell you are, or how your condition or illness affects your daily life.

The list of conditions and treatments is set nationally and tightly defined and it is:

  • 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
  • diabetes
  • solid organ, bone marrow and stem cell transplant recipients
  • specific cancers
  • immunosuppression due to disease or treatment
  • asplenia and splenic dysfunction
  • morbid obesity
  • severe mental illness

We have to follow this JCVI guidance when we vaccinate our patients and cannot move you onto the list of people with underlying health conditions unless there has been a mistake in your medical records.

Vaccinations for eligible 16 and 17 year olds

Note that if you are aged 16 or 17 and qualify for a vaccine because you have a learning disability, are a front-line health or social care worker, or have a specified underlying health condition, you will be offered the Pfizer vaccine, because this is the only vaccine that is currently licenced for people of your age. Please contact us to arrange your vaccine.

Vaccinations for Carers

If you are aged 16 and over and support an adult who is at high risk of becoming seriously ill from COVID-19 and with whom you have close personal or face to face contact, you should now get your vaccination. Carers of children are not included in this phase, apart from Carers of children who have serious neuro-disabilities and other complications.

You don’t need to wait to be contacted if you are registered to receive a Carer’s Allowance. You can book an appointment now via the national booking service www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination.

The national booking service allows you to arrange an appointment at a vaccination centre or community pharmacy-led service. Call 119 if you don’t have the internet. You can choose a time slot and location that suits you.

If it isn’t possible for you to attend any of the vaccination centres offered through the national booking service, then wait for us to contact you, and we will offer you an appointment at our GP-led vaccination centre instead.

If you do not receive Carer’s Allowance, but you are registered with us at your GP practice as an unpaid Carer, we will contact you to arrange your vaccination at our GP-led vaccination centre.

If you consider that you are a Carer for someone who is at high risk of becoming seriously ill from COVID-19 and with whom you have close personal or face to face contact, but you do not receive Carers Allowance and are not registered here at the practice as a Carer, please email us at: e82086.kinggeorgesurgery@nhs.net

The NHS is working closely with social care services colleagues and organisations that represent Carers to put in place arrangements to offer the vaccine as soon as possible to other Carers who will be eligible to receive a vaccine but don’t meet the current criteria in terms of the two categories mentioned above.  For example, if you are known to be a Carer by social services or Carers in Herts, you will be contacted directly by the NHS in the coming weeks. For other Carers who are not known by social services or other organisations, we will provide information for you and share this as widely as possible – do look out for more information.  

Shielding programme extended

The government has extended the national shielding programme to protect an additional 1.7 million people nationally. This follows evidence that some people are now known to be at a higher risk of developing serious illness from COVID-19 due to a combination of personal and health risk factors such as age, gender, ethnicity and weight (BMI).

Thousands of Hertfordshire and west Essex residents who are under 70 are now receiving shielding letters. This group of patients will be prioritised for a COVID-19 vaccination. You will hear from the practice in the coming days about booking your first appointment. If you have already received a shielding letter, you can book an appointment now through the national booking service which will allow you to arrange an appointment at one of the vaccination centres or community pharmacy sites.

The county council and partner organisations are continuing to support residents who request support via the National Shielding Support Service (NSSS) website: www.gov.uk/coronavirus-shielding-support. This can help with:

  • Deliveries of medication using volunteer support
  • Food assistance including volunteer shopper support (via Communities Help Hertfordshire) or purchasable food boxes (via Herts Independent Living Services)
  • Crisis support for those in financial difficulty or needing urgent support
  • Care support including mental health support, befriending, wellbeing visits or transport to vaccinations.

HertsHelp are also continuing to support users who do not have access to online services or are in urgent need of support. You can contact HertsHelp direct seven days a week on 0300 1234 044 or info@hertshelp.net.

Please do bear in mind we are under intense pressure to deliver the vaccination programme and continue business as usual – please be polite to our staff who are working incredibly hard.

For more information about the vaccines – click the links above, or visit gov.uk  or visit nhs.uk for more information about the vaccine programme.

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