Update on Covid-19 Vaccinations
Modbury Health Centre joined with eight other local GP surgeries to begin delivering the Covid-19 vaccination to our patients. With only ten days’ notice and rapidly developing guidance a huge amount of work was required to get this service live.
We are very grateful to the Diocese of Plymouth for supporting us by providing a site from which our nine GP practices can deliver the campaign, whilst enabling us to continue operating our usual services in practice.
The total patient population for the nine surgeries is approximately 75,000 and every individual is required to have two vaccines.
The scale of the campaign is like nothing we have previously experienced.
As a result of this the vaccination programme will last for many months. It is inevitable that along with the ongoing impact of staff self-isolation, this additional workload will cause some disruption to our usual day to day services, both clinical and administrative. Whilst we will do everything we can to mitigate this we ask that you bear with us over the coming weeks and months.
Moving forward we will be contacting patients as and when we are able to offer them the vaccine. The timelines will depend on eligibility, clinical capacity and access to the vaccine. Below is the current priority list, identified by the government, which we will be following. Please do not contact the surgery to request a vaccination or query when you will become eligible.
1 - Residents in a care home for older adults and their carers
2 - All those aged 80 and over, as well as frontline health and social care workers
3 - All those aged 75 and over
4 - All those aged 70 and over, as well as clinically extremely vulnerable individuals
5 - All those aged 65 and over
6 - All individuals aged 16-64 with underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality
7 - All those aged 60 and over
8 - All those aged 55 and over
9 - All those aged 50 and over
If you are interested in getting an idea as to when you may become eligible then the following calculator can give a rough indication:
We I would like to thank all of our staff who have worked evenings and weekends to ensure that we were able to set up our services and for those volunteers who have already stepped up to help with the running of our Covid-10 vaccination programme.#
A difficult year – with hope for the future
A joint New Year message from Steve Brown, director of public health Devon County Council and Dr Rob Dyer, NHS medical director for Devon
It is customary at this time of year to reflect, to look at the last 12-months – and then to look ahead.
This year has certainly been like no other for many of us.
What we expected at the beginning of the year - the usual trials and tribulations of normal times – were suddenly and significantly turned on their head in March.
The worrying images on our TVs screens first from Wuhan in China, then Hong Kong, Russia and then closer to home in Italy, France and elsewhere in Europe, suddenly became very real.
Lockdown, facemasks, social distancing, regular handwashing, Zoom and Teams calls – just 9-months ago terms that were so unfamiliar – entered our everyday.
Many people, including those here in Devon, lost their lives. Our thoughts are with their family and friends and we send our most sincere condolences to all who have suffered the loss of a loved one.
We have always viewed health and social care staff as essential workers together with the police and fire service, however, we all soon realised, if we hadn’t before, that retail staff, lorry and bus drivers, teachers and others were essential and we celebrated and applauded them all.
We know that there were those who were isolated and lonely, who couldn’t see family as they were in care homes, who lost their jobs and whose lives now are not as they expected.
Nightingale hospitals were opened – including ours in Exeter. A range of services were established to support those who were “shielding” and we prepared to manage the emerging situation.
And then after months of lockdown, the disease made a temporary retreat, only for it to return in the Autumn for a second wave that even now remains higher than any of us would want.
In December 91-year-old grandmother Margaret Keenan became the first person in the world to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.
Hundreds of thousands of people in the UK have now received it and it is being rolled out across Devon as soon as we can. The speed of programme depends on vaccine approval and supply, so please be patient – the NHS will let you know when it’s your turn.
As we look towards 2021 there is genuine belief that things are going to get better. A future where we can cuddle our grandchildren, meet our friends and relatives in their houses or at a pub, go out for an evening meal with friends. Get back to some sense of normality.
But we are by no means there yet. The recent announcement that a new fast-spreading strain of the disease has taken hold in London and the South East is a worrying development for us all – including for us here in Devon.
It will certainly be at least the spring before the vaccine has a real effect on transmission. And so, there are difficult weeks and months ahead for us all – but especially our health and care services.
January, February and March are usually the most difficult times for the NHS and caring services – but even before we enter Mid winter it’s hard. Many of our staff are very tired. Some wards are full and we have fewer beds so that we can maintain social distancing while people are in in hospital.
During the first wave we were forced to temporarily stand down many planned operations and treatments so that we could prioritise emergency and urgent cases. We have since restarted routine surgery, taking thousands of people off waiting lists.
We are now looking at how we might reschedule some services again, in case it’s necessary to increase capacity whether that be beds or staff, for those people whose treatments cannot wait and to save lives.
We are already using Nightingale but are planning to increase capacity there if needed. Anyone who is asked to go to the Nightingale Hospital can expect equivalent care that we would all expect in Devon’s other excellent hospitals. Feedback from patients who have been in the hospital is excellent.
As before we would continue non-COVID emergency and urgent appointments. It is therefore important that if you become unwell or have an urgent but not with a COVID-related illness you seek help and attend any appointments you are asked to do. We are here to care for you in any urgent or emergency situation.
As previously, it may be that we invite you to have your treatment at a hospital or other site that you would not normally expect. We are grateful for your understanding if this were to happen to you.
But just like so many have done before, you will want to help us. How can you do this?
While cases are rising again in all ages groups in Devon and Plymouth, most concerning is rising cases in older people as it is older and more vulnerable people who are likely to suffer the most from COVID-19.
This means that it is vitally important that whatever you are doing over the festive period, you continue to follow Tier 2 rules. Act as if you have the virus.
Now that there is a fast-spreading variant, we cannot afford to lower our guard. It is that simple. Remember ‘Hands, Space, Face’ and do not take any risks.
Failing to follow the guidance means someone’s grandparent or mother, someone’s son or daughter could be admitted to hospital. What you do directly affects others.
And what happens over the festive break if you are feeling ill or have been injured, but it’s not life-threatening and you are not sure what to do? Even if you think you need to go to A&E, call 111 first or visit 111.nhs.uk
So, our message to you in many ways is a traditional one. Take care, think of others. And thank you.
We have come so far. Let’s now prepare for the coming few months, so we can get through them together and look ahead to a happier, healthier year ahead.
FLU CLINICS 2020
Patients 50 and over with no clinical risk: We are booking appointments .
Patients 65 and over: We have contacted all 65 and over patients who had a high clinical risk and are currently vaccinating these patients. Stocks are limited so if you have not had one please book.
Patients under 65 for clinical risk patients :We have invited patients under 65 with a clinical risk for their flu vaccines. Stocks are limited so if you have not had one please book .
Pre-school children over the age of two: We are currently booking these appointments.