As in recent years we will be offering vaccines in the order of clinical priority as recommended by the government. This means that everyone aged 65 or over (or turning 65 before 31st of March 2023) or any adult in a clinical risk group will be invited for their vaccines first. Healthy 50-64 year olds will be invited later in the season once the government confirms we may proceed, this is not expected to be before the 1st of November.
This year our vaccines are due to arrive in early October. For your convenience we will be offering covid boosters and flu vaccination to eligible patients at the same appointment. Patients who are eligible to receive their flu vaccination and who are also due a covid booster will be invited to make an appointment.
Our upcoming adult vaccine clinics are as follows:
- Saturday 8th October – 08:00-18:00 – St Luke’s Surgery
- Monday 10th October – 12:00-20:00 – Ladies Walk Surgery
- Tuesday 11th October – 09:00-16:30 – Weston Lane Surgery
- Thursday 13th October – 08:00-13:00 – Bitterne Park Surgery
- Friday 14th October – 08:30-13:00 – Bitterne Park Surgery
Further clinics will be made available for October.
We do hope you understand that the delivery windows we are given by the vaccine manufacturers are beyond our control. We must decide each year whether to open our bookings early to give people the peace of mind that they have their appointment or wait until the delivery has arrived before opening bookings. Patient feedback tells us that most people much prefer to book in advance, this does however leave us at risk of needing to move appointment dates if there are delivery delays. We will always try to give as much notice as possible should this happen.
Our booking system opens in mid-September and eligible patients will be invited via text message (unless you have specifically requested an alternate contact method) to book their appointment. Our text messages are sent out in batches over a period of days, so please do not worry if your friend or relative receives their text before you. We have enough appointments and enough vaccine for everyone who needs one.
To avoid overwhelming our phone lines we do ask that where possible you book your appointment online. If you have not already done so, please consider downloading the NHS app as this is the easiest way to book your winter vaccine appointment.
NHS websites outline eligibility for flu and covid vaccines this winter, however if you are still unsure about your eligibility you can submit an e-consult for admin support. This will be passed to our nursing team who will be able to check your eligibility for you.
Children’s Flu Campaign
Our children’s flu campaign runs alongside our adult campaign however it is run slightly differently.
As the vaccines for children come from a central NHS supply we are not able to order as far in advance, we must wait for confirmation from the NHS as to when ordering will be open.
Once we are able to order we will add clinics and send out invitations to parents via text message.
Children who are in a clinical risk group or are aged 2 or 3 on or before the 31st of August 2022 are eligible for vaccination at the surgery.
Children who do not fall into either of these categories are not eligible for their flu vaccine at a GP surgery. Depending on their age, they may however be eligible for a vaccine at school.
Each year we get a considerable number of parents asking for us to vaccinate their healthy school aged child at the surgery. Reasons for request often include missing the vaccine at school, being nervous to have it at school or wanting it sooner than the school date. Please know that we are unable to vaccinate healthy, school aged children at the practice. This is not us being difficult or not wanting to help, it is because we are only able to vaccinate the age groups that we are told to via national or local NHS guidance, just like the school nurses are only able to vaccinate the group that falls under their remit.
The school nursing teams must always offer catch up sessions if your child missed theirs at school, they will also be happy to accommodate anxious or nervous children. Every school office should hold the contact details for your local school nurses, this is who you should contact with any concerns or to make an appointment if your child missed their school’s day.