Adult Flu Clinics and potential Covid-19 Booster Programme 2021

During the past 12 months, the practice has delivered its largest influenza programme, immediately followed by the Covid-19 Vaccination roll out, where the large majority of patients have been vaccinated twice! This has been a huge logistical challenge and one that presents itself again as we head towards our first winter where the seasonal flu virus will cocirculate alongside Covid19. This has the potential to add substantially to the winter pressures usually faced by the NHS.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation have issued an interim report about a potential Covid-19 Booster Programme and until such details are confirmed, the practice cannot make plans to give this alongside the flu. There are also a number of unknowns making planning difficult, such as who will be eligible, what vaccine is required and when it can be given. Once these details are confirmed, the practice will issue further communications about its delivery and may need to amend or change how we operate our clinics. We appreciate your co-operation and patience in this matter.

As a result, the practice will continue to invite and book patients their influenza vaccination appointments. The Westgate Practice do not want to delay vaccination against influenza given that the flu season might start earlier than usual and infections rates may be higher than the very low levels last year.

Please note:

Last year, we made some changes to the way our flu clinics were run. Many of our patients appreciated the way this was organized and we therefore propose to operate in a similar manner this year. This will best protect both patients and staff running the clinics. Individuals will be invited, either by text or letter, to book an appointment. Please only book once you have been invited as we are calling our most clinically vulnerable patients first and then by age groups. Bookings can be done online via Patient Access or by telephone.

All Flu clinics are strictly by appointment only.

Clinic Dates

PPE and Social Distancing requirements will remain in place for our clinics. We are intending to hold a number of clinics starting from Saturday 18th September, Saturday 25th September, Saturday 9th October and Saturday 30th October at Greenhill and on Tuesday 21st September at our Shenstone Surgery.

Clinic Requirements

  • Book an appointment once invited
  • Only attend your appointment if you are well
  • You must a face covering/mask
  • Wear clothing to allow for easy access to your upper arm
  • Arrive no more than 5 minutes before your booked time. Please note your
    appointment time may vary from that specified.
  • Limited parking will be available on both the patient and staff car parks. If possible please find alternate parking or approach on foot.
  • A supervised socially distanced queuing system will be in place. You will be invited into the building and directed to a clinical room to be met by a clinician and a member of the patient services team.
  • After vaccination you will be asked to stand outside the room and wait to be escorted to the exit at the rear of the building.

For further information about the influenza vaccine please visit:
www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/flu-influenza-vaccine.

Only eligible patients will be invited. Pharmacies will continue to offer a vaccine service at a cost to those not eligible.

Please note: Patients aged 50-64 years, who are not in the ‘at risk’ category, will again be eligible for the influenza vaccine. These patients will be invited once all our  vulnerable and other eligible patients have been vaccinated to ensure that those who are most at risk are vaccinated first.

We thank you in advance for your cooperation and understanding.

Be prepared for winter

Coronavirus (Covid-19) is still circulating within the population. You should continue to follow government guidance to ensure you keep safe and well through the winter. Getting prepared will help support this:

Ensure you have a basic first aid kit to include over the counter medicines such a paracetamol and ibuprofen.

Have a thermometer available, and if possible a pulse oximeter as oxygen saturation levels are an important indicator of general health. These can be purchased from a chemist or online.

Stock up with basic non-perishable and frozen food, together with other essential household supplies.

If you have a high temperature; new continuous cough; loss of sense of smell/taste then stay at home & follow the guidelines! For further information about Coronavirus, please visit: www.nhs.uk/coronavirus.