Norfolk and Waveney’s COVID-19 vaccine programme continues at pace with more choice for patients looking to book appointments
Norfolk and Waveney’s COVID-19 vaccine programme continues to move at pace with a range of options and locations for appointments now available for local people.
It comes as the region’s COVID-19 vaccination programme continues to make good progress, with 341,600 people, 40.1% of our over 16 population having now received their first dose, according to data published today by NHS England and NHS Improvement. This places Norfolk and Waveney 4th out of 42 health systems in England. The national average is 32.8% and the regional average is 34.0%.
GP practices in Norfolk and Waveney continue to work incredibly hard to vaccinate priority groups and are currently focusing on cohort 6, those aged 16-64 with underlying health conditions. If you are in this group, please do not contact your GP directly, they will contact you as soon as it’s your turn.
Patients in cohorts 5, those aged 65-69 years old, and cohorts 7, those aged 60-64, who have received a letter inviting them to book a vaccine appointment should do so through the national website www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination or call 119.
GP practices will also be vaccinating these cohorts, so if you don’t want to book an appointment via the national booking service, you should wait for your local GP practice to invite you for an appointment. Please do not contact your local GP practice or hospital; please wait to be invited.
Appointments are also available at a number of large scale vaccination centres in Norfolk and Waveney including, Hayden Chemist, Lowestoft; Castle Quarter Shopping Centre, Norwich; Connaught Hall, Attleborough; North Walsham Community Centre; Lowestoft old Law Courts and Norwich Community Hospital.
Appointments for large scale vaccination centres are released in line with vaccine supply, so some sites will come and go, depending on when the patient accesses the system, so the local NHS is urging those who are eligible for an appointment to be patient and keep checking.
Melanie Craig, Chief Executive of NHS Norfolk and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “The COVID-19 vaccination programme continues to make great progress in Norfolk and Waveney and I would like to thank our fantastic NHS staff, volunteers and local communities who have rallied to support this unprecedented effort.
“Local people now have a range of options and locations for appointments available to them. People who have received a letter inviting them to book an appointment via the national booking service can look for an appointment at a time and location that’s convenient to them.
“New appointments are regularly being added, so please be patient and keep checking if you don’t immediately see an appointment in a suitable location for you.
“Alternatively, people can choose to wait to be contacted by their local GP services.”
Once vaccinated people should continue to follow Covid safety rules including social distancing guidance and, if you can, wear something that covers your nose and mouth in places where it's hard to stay away from other people.
The infection rate continues to fall in Norfolk and Waveney but remains high.
Notes to Editors:
Some patients have not received the first dose of the vaccine this will be because:
- The patient may have had the COVID-19 virus in the past 28 days – if this is the case, a vaccine will be offered as soon as possible, and contact will be made by the patient’s GP practice.
- Some patients are unable to have the current vaccines available due to pre-existing health conditions or prescribed ongoing medication.
- Some patients have been contacted but haven’t responded to the invitation; if this you, please book an appointment with the practice that contacted you as soon as possible or call the national booking system (details in the letter sent) if you have received an invitation to one of the large scale vaccination sites.
- In a very small number of cases, some patients had booked their appointment but not turned up for their vaccination – we encourage everyone to keep both of their vaccination appointments and if they can’t, please contact their GP practice or national booking centre, depending on how the appointment was made.
- Personal / patient choice. The vaccine is only given with consent.
COVID-19 vaccination programme
- There are currently 33 vaccination sites across Norfolk and Waveney: They comprise of five ‘hospital hubs’ (including NSFT and NCH&C who are vaccinating staff), 21 PCN sites, six large vaccination centres (including Lowestoft old Law Courts and Norwich Community Hospital), and one pharmacy.
- We are still awaiting confirmation of when other large centres will open, but we expect they will go live in a phased approach. New sites will be announced by the NHS just before they go live.
- We continue to work with NHSE/I and local pharmacies to increase the number of pharmacies involved.
- People who are aged 70 or over or are in the clinically extremely vulnerable category and have not yet been offered a first dose of the vaccine, can now contact the NHS to get it. You can do this by booking an appointment online at nhs.uk/covidvaccination or by calling 119.
- Please don’t worry if you are unable to book online, the NHS will contact you to book your vaccination.
- More information can be found here: https://www.norfolkandwaveneyccg.nhs.uk/covid-19-vaccination-programme
- It’s really important to attend the appointment you’re offered if you can, but anyone who may have difficulty attending a vaccination appointment should discuss that with their GP practice or hospital when they are contacted to arrange an appointment time. Support from various community transport services is available to people depending upon eligibility.
- Everyone should continue to follow all the guidance to control the virus and save lives – that means staying at home as much as possible and following the ‘hands, face, space’ guidance if you have to go out.