Councillors help nurses visit shielding Welwyn Hatfield residents to give flu vaccinations
PUBLISHED: 12:21 20 October 2020 | UPDATED: 12:21 20 October 2020
Two Welwyn Hatfield councillors have been helping nurses ensure residents who are shielding receive their annual flu vaccinations.
Cllr Fiona Thomson, executive member for public health, governance and climate change, and deputy mayor Cllr Peter Hebden stepped in to drive local nurses to the homes of high priority patients registered with the Lister House and Garden City GP practices, to administer the vaccine.
Cllr Thomson said: “I’m delighted to help over 20 housebound patients receive their flu jab this morning. I drove the nurse to each address, saving them time and helping more residents become vaccinated in half the time.”
“Over 50 housebound elderly patients have been given their flu jab in half the time during the couple of days I’ve helped out,” Cllr Hebden added. “The nurse doesn’t have to park and walk to the address. We drop them off at the address, wait for them and then we’re off to the next patient.”
Garden City practice manager Sarah Ellingworth said: “This year’s flu campaign is more complex due to COVID and our clinical team has more home vaccinations to administer. So it is fantastic to have the support of an informal taxi service so our nurses can get round patients more quickly.”
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Parkfield Medical Centre in Potters Bar also completed a mammoth vaccination clinic this month, with 2,206 immunised in total.
The centre said: “A team of patients group volunteers and students on work experience helped over the weekend [October 3 to 4] to marshal the queuing system and assist and fast track those in the queue who were less mobile.
“This is unprecedented and an outstanding achievement by the team. To put this into context the surgery has informed us that to have done this many vaccinations by appointment would have taken 184 hours of clinical time, 46 sessions or 23 days. The weekend of clinics has managed to avoid any impact on the surgery’s routine appointment capacity.
“We even got a special mention on Tony Blackburn’s BBC Radio London show on Sunday evening!”
One Potters Bar woman did tell the WHT she sadly missed out but vaccinations are being rolled out in phases so that those who are at the greatest risk from the virus can be vaccinated first.
The full list of high priority groups can be found here: nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/flu-influenza-vaccine.
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