Covid Autumn Boosters
COVID AUTUMN BOOSTER
BLOXHAM & HOOK NORTON SURGERIES WILL NOT BE TAKING PART IN THE AUTUMN BOOSTER PROGRAMME.
People at greatest risk of serious illness from Covid, including care home residents, over 65s and frontline health and social care workers, are eligible for an autumn vaccine booster.
Here’s everything you need to know.
Am I eligible for an autumn Covid booster?
The following people are eligible for an autumn Covid booster:
- Residents in care homes for older adults
- All adults aged 65 years and over
- People aged 6 months to 64 years in a clinical risk group, as defined in tables 3 and 4 of the Covid-19 chapter of the UKHSA Green Book on Immunisation
- frontline health and social care workers.
- People aged 12 to 64 years who are household contacts of people with immunosuppression, as defined in the UKHSA Green Book
- People aged 16 to 64 years who are carers, as defined in the UKHSA Green Book, and staff working in care homes for older adults
This is because the risk of severe Covid continues to be strongly associated with increasing age and underlying health conditions.
When is the booster available and how do I book an appointment?
- Vaccinations will begin on 11 September for those most at risk, including adult care home residents and people who are immunosuppressed.
- From 18 September, the NHS will start to invite people in priority order of risk and those eligible will be able to book an appointment on the National Booking Service.
- The National booking Service can be contacted on 119
Practice Update Letter July 2021
First Contact Physio
First Contact Physio
You can now speak to specialist Physiotherapist Nicki instead of a GP. Booking an initial telephone consultation with First Contact Physio gives you faster access to expert diagnosis along with advice and exercises you need to start tackling the problem. Nicki can also refer you on to hospital services where necessary, order tests and recommend a GP to prescribe pain relief etc.
First Contact Physio will:
- Assess you and diagnose what’s happening.
- Give expert advice on how best to manage your condition.
- Refer you on to specialist services if necessary.
- First Contact Physiotherapists can deal with any of the following problems:
- Soft tissue, muscle and joint pain.
- Strains or sports injuries.
- Arthritis – any joint.
- Possible problems with muscles, ligaments, tendons or bone,eg tennis elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome, ankle sprains.
- Spinal pain including lower back pain, mid-back pain and neck pain.
- Spinal-related pain in arms or legs, including nerve symptoms, eg pins and needles or numbness.
- Please speak to the Reception Team to book a telephone triage appointment with our specialist physiotherapist.
Since December, Bloxham and Hook Norton Surgery have been working with four local surgeries as part of a primary care network called ‘North Oxfordshire Rural Alliance’ to deliver vaccines from Chipping Norton Health Centre. With outstanding efforts from staff and volunteers, we have succeeded in delivering over 30,000 vaccines.
We are keen to keep working hard towards vaccinating as many patients as we can, so we have signed up to continue delivering the vaccines to groups 10-12, as well as completing the 2nd doses for those in groups 1-9. On a weekly basis, logistics and guidelines change. Please continue to read the following information regarding some recent updates.
Booking key points:
• For group 1-9 patients, we have been sending text invites and phoning our patients from the surgery. For our group 10-12 patients, the NHS ‘National Booking Service’ will be sending out texts or letters to those eligible.
• If there is appointment availability with us when you receive your text, you may have the opportunity to book into Chipping Norton Health Centre via the National Booking Service.
• Please avoid contacting the surgery about vaccination appointments so that our reception team are available for calls from patients who are unwell.
• There have been no specific safety concerns identified with any brand of Covid-19 vaccines in relation to pregnancy.
• 90,000 pregnant women have been vaccinated with Pfizer and Moderna in the USA without any safety concerns.
• Based on the evidence we have, it is preferable for pregnant women in the UK to be offered the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines where available.
• There is no evidence to suggest that other vaccines are unsafe for pregnant women, but more research is needed.
• Being pregnant by itself does not put you into a ‘priority’ vaccine group. You would only be vaccinated as part of the group 1-9 cohort if you had other particular health conditions that put you into those priority groups.
• Pregnant women who have received a first dose of AstraZeneca and are due to receive their 2nd dose are advised to complete with the same vaccine.
For more information:
COVID-19 vaccination: a guide for all women of childbearing age, pregnant or breastfeeding - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Combined info sheet and decision aid 16.04.2021 (rcog.org.uk)
AstraZeneca guideline change:
• For details on last week’s change in guidelines for the AstraZeneca vaccine, please read the following:
Use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 (AZD1222) vaccine: updated JCVI statement, 7 May 2021 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
• Adults under 40 years old, without underlying health conditions, who are currently eligible for the vaccine should be preferentially offered an alternative to the AstraZeneca vaccine, where possible, and only where no substantial delay or barrier in access to vaccination would arise.
Second doses of AstraZeneca:
• All those who have received a 1st dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine should continue to be offered a 2nd dose of AstraZeneca vaccine, irrespective of age. The 2nd dose will be important for longer lasting protection against Covid-19.
• The only individuals who should not have a 2nd dose of AstraZeneca are those who have experienced major thrombosis occurring with associated low platelet levels following vaccination with their first Covid-19 vaccine.
NHS Digital Update 20/07/2021
The current NHS Digital (NHSD) extract of GP data for Research purposes (known as the GPDPR) has been delayed due to NHSD wishing to review the way in which this data will be collected, to conduct more public involvement and information about the plans and change the way in which patients can opt out of the extract of their GP data.
Currently the only way to opt out is to complete a Type 1 opt out form and return this to the practice by the 1st September. However, this extract will not be taken until the NHSD have changed the way it will take the data and respect the patient’s choice for using their data. NHSD are introducing the following changes to the opt out process which will mean that patients will be able to change their opt-out status at any time::-
- Patients do not need to register a Type 1 opt-out by 1st September to ensure their GP data will not be uploaded.
- NHS Digital will create the technical means to allow GP data that has previously been uploaded to the system via the GPDPR collection to be deleted when someone registers a Type 1 opt-out.
- The plan to retire Type 1 opt-outs will be deferred for at least 12 months while we get the new arrangements up and running and will not be implemented without consultation with the RCGP, the BMA and the National Data Guardian.
This means that you can opt out at any time in the future and NHSD will delete data that they already have taken for research purposes, the deadline of the 01/09/2020 has been delayed until a new system of opt out is developed. Hopefully, this will be a simple centralised approach via the NHS app or NHS website to avoid paper form and administration work for your GP.
We will update you when we know more about the NHSD plans to change how you can control who has access to your data.
Banburyshire Advice Centre support
Banburyshire Advice Centre supports many patients at other surgeries in the Banbury area who need help applying for Blue Badges, benefits and general advice working closely with Social Prescribers. We are also able to issue Food vouchers to those in need.
We are able to provide general advice and Career Advice. However, we cannot provide debt or legal or Tax advice but can refer or signpost onto other agencies.
The charity is very fortunate in that we can arrange free initial advice for Wills and Power of Attorney for our clients.
We are very happy to support your patients who may need our expertise. A referral is quick and easy.
You can send an email to this address: firstname.lastname@example.org with the outline of the problem or contact details and we can do the rest
or you can phone us up and leave a message on 01295 279988
Information for Patients
We would like to reassure all our patients that General Practice is open and here for all who need to use our services.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, our practice has remained open and here for you.
We have simply been doing things differently, with greater emphasis on remote assessments and inviting patients for face-to-face appointments only when necessary. But we have never closed our doors as a service; we have simply been operating in a COVID-safe way.
Although lockdown restrictions are easing it is still important for the safety of patients and staff that we continue to maintain a COVID- secure environment. It is hugely encouraging that the vaccination rollout has been so successful, but infection rates are still concerning and the emergence of new COVID variants poses a risk we cannot ignore. For this reason, the NHS will continue to ask patients and visitors coming to hospitals and GP practices to wear face masks when they enter the building and to socially distance. By taking these simple precautions we can work together to help prevent the further spread of infection among both patients and staff.
We will also continue to assess patients remotely first and will offer face-to-face appointments to those who need them. This will include people with existing medical conditions who need greater support (for example, people with learning difficulties or who may be living with hearing loss), and those who we assess to have a particular need that requires a face-to-face appointment.
Using telephone assessment methods means we can make sure our time is used to help each patient in the best way for their particular health concern. We would like to reassure you that we will always be working hard to put your needs, as patients, first.
Routine screenings, health checks and immunisations all continue to be available at your GP practice.
We are very aware how difficult the pandemic has been for many patients. We also understand that some may be frustrated at having to wait a little longer than usual for certain treatments. Similarly, our telephone lines have been far busier than usual for this time of year, and patients may find themselves on hold for longer while we deal with calls.
We would ask, however, that all patients please treat our staff with kindness and respect. General Practice has been working extremely hard and very long hours, throughout the pandemic and the recent vaccination rollout. This has been a difficult and exhausting time for many of our staff, who continue to work diligently to support all our patients.
We appreciate your patience and understanding in this and would like to thank our patients for their support.
Using NHS services
If you have any concerning or suspicious symptoms, please do not hesitate to contact us. We understand that some of you may have put off contacting your GP because of the COVID situation, for various reasons. But if you have a genuine concern, please get in touch as soon as possible. We want to help you.
For minor complaints, your pharmacy, the NHS111 telephone service or www.111.nhs.uk will be able to give you the help you need quickly and easily.
If you need urgent care please call 111 or go to www.111.nhs.uk first. These can then direct you to the most appropriate local service (for instance, a minor injury unit or A&E). please always call 999 for a life-threatening illness or injury.
If you have COVID symptoms – a high temperature, new continuous cough or loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – please make sure you get tested and continue to follow the guidance by self-isolating to help protect those you may come into contact with.
For more information about COVID-19 and how to arrange a test, please click here Coronavirus (COVID-19) - NHS (www.nhs.uk)
We are conscious that some patients registered at Bloxham and Hook Norton Surgeries may be affected by current events in Afghanistan. Bloxham and Hook Norton Surgeries are accredited by the Royal College of General Practitioners as one which specialises in the care of military veterans and their families. All the team have been trained in the care of military veterans and their families. If recent events have affected you and you wish to seek help, please come forward.
Age UK Oxfordshire has launched a new scams prevention and support programme for older people in Oxfordshire area.
We are able to offer group talks to raise awareness of scams and also 1 to 1 sessions for those who have been affected by scams.
The programme, funded by Lloyds Banking Group, will help to prevent older people from falling for scams by increasing their knowledge and confidence to recognise and deal with attempted scams. It will also provide support to older fraud victims recovering after an incident.
Older people can be particularly vulnerable to fraud and scams, which can have a serious emotional and financial impact, and can damage quality of life and wellbeing for many.
Sophisticated scams have been on the rise during the pandemic with criminals devising even more ways to target those they believe to be vulnerable. This means it’s even more vital to support those that may be at greater risk.
We’re really pleased to be launching the Age UK Scams Prevention and Support Programme in the Oxfordshire area. Scams can have a devastating effect on older victims - in England and Wales an older person becomes a victim of fraud every 40 seconds, which is over 800,000 older people every year. This shows us just how important this programme is to try and keep the older people in Oxfordshire as safe as possible when it comes to financial crime.
To find out more about Age UK Oxfordshire’s Scams Prevention and Support Programme, please contact: 0345 450 1276.
The GP Practices and Health Centres of the North Oxfordshire Rural Alliance Primary Care Network partners with some third parties to provide specific healthcare and social prescribing services. These third parties are signed up to Data Sharing Contracts with the North Oxfordshire Rural Alliance and the information they are supplied with is limited only to that of the patients that they have appointments with. The third party companies do not retain, share, store or use personally identifiable information for any secondary purposes.
If you would like further information on the third parties we work with, please contact the Practice Manager