Commonly asked question about COVID Vaccinations

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Every day at the surgery, people are ringing or emailing to ask us similar questions. We’re putting together a series of the more commonly asked ones that cause people the greatest confusion and concern. QUESTION 1

I’ve received a letter inviting me to book for my vaccine but when I go on-line to book, Measham hub isn’t listed. Can I book directly, or with the practice?


Sorry, but no you cannot. Throughout the vaccination campaign NHSE has been sending invitations to the subsequent 1 or 2 cohorts to keep the flow of patients steady. Practices have been currently tasked with focusing on cohort 6 (age 16-64 with serious underlying health conditions, learning disabilities and registered carers) because we have access to medical records whereas NHS England are sending invitations to anyone aged over 56 years. (Cohorts 7 & 8) because these people are considered more likely to be mobile and able to travel to alternative sites. Having an NHS invitation does not entitle you to an imminent vaccination at the practice or at our North West Leicestershire hub at Measham. GPs have to vaccinate in order of priority group to protect the most vulnerable. Once we have finished cohort 6 in 10-14 days time, we will start inviting patients in cohort 7 (age 60-64y). We would encourage you to book online and get vaccinated ASAP if you have received a letter, or alternatively you can wait for us to contact you in due course, but please don’t ring us to chase this. It is important to note that if you arrange to have your first vaccination at a national hub, you will be responsible for arranging your booster at the same hub and will not receive a reminder or invitation for this from the practice


Can I choose whether I have the Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccine?


No, I’m afraid this is not possible. In the early days of vaccinating, only the Pfizer vaccine was available. Subsequently practices, our local hub at Measham and the National hubs have been receiving only Astrazeneca vaccine and this is set to continue. Strict quantities of the Pfizer vaccine will be delivered to the hubs soon in order that people can receive their second booster dose. For the foreseeable future at least the only available first dose is AstraZeneca.


Do I need to contact the practice to arrange my second dose of vaccine?


No. Booster doses are being arranged for approximately 12 weeks following your first vaccine. If you had your first dose at the NWL Measham hub or at the surgery, we will contact you either via telephone or text inviting you to book your booster dose when this is due. However, If 12 weeks has passed and you have not received your invitation, please do make an enquiry with the practice. If you had your first vaccine elsewhere i.e. at a national hub, you will not receive an invitation or reminder from the practice and will need to return to the same site for your booster.


Can I choose whether to have my vaccination at the practice, at the North West Leicestershire hub (Measham) or at a national hub e.g. Pride Park, Derby?


There is a certain amount of flexibility but there are some basic principles to understand. NWL is primarily delivering vaccinations to the local population from the hub at Measham leisure centre. When there are surplus Astrazeneca vaccines, practices receive these and are then able to offer a clinic at the surgery. If you are in the current targeted cohort, you will receive either a call or a text from the practice inviting you to book at one of these two places depending on where the next clinic is being held. If you only want to have your vaccine in the practice you may have to wait longer.NHSE is sending letters to people in subsequent cohorts inviting them to book at a national hub. These letters tend to arrive 2 to 3 weeks before the practice would ordinarily be contacting you. You therefore have the option of getting an earlier vaccine at a national hub or waiting a few weeks for the practice to contact you in turn. Having a letter from NHS England does not give you an immediate entitlement to have a vaccine at the surgery or local hub. Please note, If you have your first vaccine at a national hub you will need to return to the same place for your booster and you will not receive a reminder for this from the practice.