By Dr Colin Patterson
GPs across north Cumbria are now delivering the covid vaccine to our most vulnerable patients.
This has been an extraordinary undertaking mobilising our full primary care teams – GPs, nurses, pharmacists, healthcare assistants the admin teams and many, many others including volunteers.
The rollout was phased across our Primary Care Networks – that is groups of GP Practices working together in local areas. The vaccines are being delivered from hubs by teams working together.
It is a huge achievement that by the end of this month we expect our care home residents, our over 80s and many of our frontline health and social care staff will have had their first vaccine.
We know there is a great deal of anxiety from people who are keen to get their vaccination and we understand this. In fact it is pleasing to see the enthusiasm for this vaccine and we know take up rates have been very high.
But we’re asking people to help us in the NHS by not calling up your GP to try and book your vaccine – you cannot - and you will be told to wait until you are contacted by the NHS.
We expect that all our over 80s should have had the offer of the vaccine by the end of this week. If you are worried you or a relative has been missed, please first check in with them and if you need to, then please call your practice.
Others should please wait to be contacted.
We hope all over 70s should be done by later in February so please don’t call to ask until our primary care teams have had the chance to contact you.
The priority cohorts have been decided by the Joint Committee of Vaccines and Immunisations (JCVI) and you can read more about their decision here….
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/priority-groups-for-coronavirus-covid-19-vaccination-advice-from-the-jcvi-30-december-2020 OR this explains the cohorts they have identified.
We will then continue through the groups. Once you have had your vaccine you still need to follow all the guidelines – social distance and remember hands – face – space. This is to ensure you reduce the risk of spreading the virus even if you don’t become unwell yourself.
I know my colleagues want to say a thank you to those that have turned up for their appointments with such enthusiasm. It is a privilege for us to look after our community. Thank you in advance for your patience. The vaccine roll-out is underway, and we are going as fast as we can.