FLU SEASON 2020/21
As you will be aware, Coronavirus has had a significant impact on the NHS and has changed the way we deliver care to our patients. This extends to the delivery of the flu vaccination programme for which we must vaccinate thousands of patients, whilst maintaining social distancing and minimising risks to patients and staff.
As an eligible patient for the flu vaccination you may be familiar with attending for either a pre booked or walk in appointment at your registered GP practice. Due to the unprecedented situation we find ourselves in we need to consider alternative options where we can safely deliver the vaccination in much larger buildings where queues can be safely accommodated, and social distancing measures put in place.
We are working together with other practices in the Poole Central Network (The Adam Practice, Rosemary Medical Centre, Evergreen Oak Surgery, Lifeboat Quay Medical Centre, Poole Town Surgery, Dr Newmans) where we hope to deliver the clinics via a combination of drive through or walk through clinics.
Once the venues and dates are confirmed, we will be contacting eligible patients to provide you with all the information you need to book an appointment. This may be via email, text or letter.
In line with government guidance we will be prioritising the eligible patients (please see the list of eligible population below).
If you have any queries regarding our Flu Vaccination Programme 2020 please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01202 836410.
WHO CAN RECEIVE THE FLU VACCINATION ON THE NHS?
In 2020/21, flu vaccinations will be offered under the NHS flu vaccination programme to the following groups:
1. all children aged two to eleven (but not twelve years or older) on 31 August 2020 - please note school aged children will be vaccinated by their school vaccination programme NOT by their GP Practice.
2. people aged 65 years or over (including those becoming age 65 years by 31 March 2021)
3. those aged from six months to less than 65 years of age, in a clinical risk group such as those with:
· chronic (long-term) respiratory disease, such as severe asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or bronchitis
· chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
· chronic kidney disease at stage three, four or five
· chronic liver disease
· chronic neurological disease, such as Parkinson’s disease or motor neurone disease,
· learning disability
· splenic dysfunction or asplenia
· a weakened immune system due to disease (such as HIV/AIDS) or treatment (such as cancer treatment)
· morbidly obese (defined as BMI of 40 and above)
4. all pregnant women (including those women who become pregnant during the flu season)
5. household contacts of those on the NHS Shielded Patient List, or of immunocompromised individuals, specifically individuals who expect to share living accommodation with a shielded patient on most days over the winter and therefore for whom continuing close contact is unavoidable
6. people living in long-stay residential care homes or other long-stay care facilities where rapid spread is likely to follow introduction of infection and cause high morbidity and mortality. This does not include, for instance, prisons, young offender institutions, university halls of residence, or boarding schools (except where children are of primary school age or secondary school Year 7).
7. those who are in receipt of a carer’s allowance, or who are the main carer of an older or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill
8. health and social care staff, employed by a registered residential care/nursing home or registered domiciliary care provider, who are directly involved in the care of vulnerable patients/clients who are at increased risk from exposure to influenza.
Flu vaccinations might be offered to individuals between 50-64 years old, however this will be following prioritisation of other eligible groups and subject to vaccine supply.
If you do not fall into any of these categories, but are worried about contracting flu during the winter, either speak to your GP for advice or visit NHS Choices website - www.nhs.uk
NOTE TO PARENTS: If your child is under 16 years and will be attending immunisation accompanied by another family member (e.g. Grandparent), you MUST give us your signed consent . Without this consent, we shall be unable to vaccinate your child until it has been obtained. Please click here to download the consent form - or ask for a copy at reception.
If you are not entitled to receive a free flu vaccination, you may pay for it privately. Private Flu vaccinations are offered by pharmacies such as Boots, Tesco, Asda or other local pharmacies. For more information please click HERE
In most cases there is nothing to worry about. Within a week with rest and treatment from your pharmacist you should start to feel better.
This year Public Health England is concerned over the increased number and severity of Flu cases. If you are pregnant, over 65, have a long term medical condition, or a weakened immune system, you may be at risk of severe illness and/or complications.
Current guidance from the Department of Health asks GP's to consider the use of specific antiviral medication to treat flu. This is most effective if given within 48 hours of onset of symptoms.
Symptoms of flu include:
- High Temperatures (usually >38 degrees)
- General symptoms of Unwell such as: Headache; Feverish; Muscle/Joint pains; Fatigue
- Respiratory Symptoms such as: cough; sore throat; nasal congestion