Firstly I would like to thanks all the patients who have responded to our text messages about flu vaccinations for the over 50’s. We have over 800 patients who could be eligible – and initially we had no idea what the uptake level was likely to be. By responding promptly to our texts you have really helped us to plan and deliver this flu vaccination campaign quickly – and certainly much quicker than other practices. Thank you!
As fit and healthy individuals with no chronic long term health conditions I am aware that you are probably infrequent users of our practice – and have probably never participated in a mass vaccination campaign before. We have up to 250 patients being vaccinated on Saturday morning – so we need things to run as smoothly as possible. This will only happen if you, as a participant, help us. You can do so by reading the information below so you know what to expect.
Preparation will begin before you leave your house – by ensuring that you wear appropriate clothes. The injection will be given in your upper left arm unless there is an exceptional reason why we can’t ( and we’re talking ‘missing limb’ kind of exception!). Doing the same arm on every patient simplifies and speeds up our record keeping.
Please ensure that when you dress you choose something loose fitting around your arm such as a tee-shirt or a short sleeve blouse – something so that this section of your arm is very easily accessible. Having patients needing to partially undress to reveal their upper arm slows things down considerably – so please avoid long sleeve shirts or tight jumpers.
Please also do not forget that you will need to be wearing a face covering when you enter our building – so make sure you bring one of those with you too!
Please arrive as close to your appointment time as possible. We have 3 nurses vaccinating patients at 3 minute intervals, and arrival times are also staggered at one minute intervals. Our aim is to have a constant and steady flow of patients throughout the morning. This is why you most likely have a strange appointment time such as 10:17 – rather than a time that ends in a ‘0’ or ‘5’. Obviously – if you’re arriving as a couple – YES! Please DO attend as a couple! (It’s actually our only opportunity for any catch-up time or a coffee!). We consider members of the same household to be in the same ‘bubble’ – so better together.
When you come into the surgery – weather permitting – all doors will be OPEN. This is intentional so that nobody has to touch any surfaces such as door handles (in turn that means we don’t have to constantly clean them for covid). This may mean it’s chilly in the building – but please DO NOT shut the door behind you!
Once you’re in the building please proceed to reception which is to the right. The receptionist will check you in and direct you straight to a nurses room. Please DO NOT go and sit in the waiting room – hopefully there will be no need! If the nurse is still dealing with the previous patient – there are markings on the floor at 2 meter intervals. Please wait outside the specified room and the nurse will call you in when she’s ready.
Our nurses are more than happy to vaccinate you standing up – so again – please don’t think about sitting down! You will be asked a few simple questions;
- Confirm your identity (name / address / date of birth)
- Are you well today? (This may lead to other questions…)
- Have you ever had a flu vaccine before, perhaps at a pharmacy?
- Have you ever had reactions to any vaccines previously?
- Have you ever had breast surgery, and if so, to which side?
- Are you allergic to anything (in particular eggs)?
Assuming that the nurse is happy with all your responses you will then give the injection in your upper left arm. This is done with an extremely fine needle – you most likely won’t even feel it.
Once you’ve been vaccinated we ask that you leave the building by the rear exit – which is at the diagonally opposite corner of the building to the entrance. We’re doing this to try and ensure patients remain 2 meters apart and are not in close proximity to others in the building. Once outside you’ll find yourself in the staff car park further up Faraday Avenue. When you leave the car park turn left down the hill to get back to the patient car park.
Just a few other things to note…
While I’m here could I just ask you about…
It’s often tempting to ask about other things while you’ve got an appointment with a nurse. Unfortunately our sole focus on Saturday will be to provide flu vaccines – but we would be more than happy to answer any queries next week. Please just use the ‘AskMyGP‘ system and we’ll get back to you.
Our incoming telephone lines will not be operating on Saturday. We appreciate that sometimes things happen beyond your control, and you will not be able to contact us to let us know. If you are running late – please do still attend – we will do our upmost to get you vaccinated. If you are unable to attend – don’t worry –please just contact us next week to rearrange.
Again – because this is a Saturday and we have limited staff we will not have any dispensing staff onsite and you will not be able to collect any medications on Saturday morning. Please come on a weekday if you need anything from Dispensary.
Thanks to Staff
As a manager I consider myself extremely lucky to work with such a dedicated team who are willing to work part of their weekend to deliver this vaccination programme. We’re running this on a Saturday because we appreciate that a lot of patients will be at work in the week. Please help me to thank them by extending your gratitude to them when you see them! (Obviously only if you see fit!)
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