The NHS in West Sussex has started vaccinating patients against coronavirus at the Royal Sussex Hospital in Brighton at the start of the biggest immunisation programme in history.
Brighton and Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has been chosen as one of fifty hospital hubs nationwide in the first wave of the vaccination programme. More hospitals will start vaccinating over the coming weeks and months as the programme ramps up.
The Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is being used. This vaccine is shown to offer up to 95% efficacy and has been given regulatory approval by the MHRA, the official UK regulator, which has also made clear this vaccine is very safe and highly effective.
The public can really help the NHS deliver this effectively to those who need it most by following this advice:
- The NHS will contact you when it’s the right time to come forward, so please don’t contact the NHS to seek a vaccine before then
- Please act on your invite when it comes, and make sure you attend your appointments when you arrange one
- Please continue to abide by all the social distancing and hand hygiene guidance.
People aged 80 and over as well as care home workers will be first to receive the jab, along with NHS workers who are at higher risk.
Patients aged 80 and above who are already attending hospital as an outpatient, and those who are being discharged home after a hospital stay, will be among the first to receive the vaccination.
The Trust will begin inviting people aged over 80 to come in for the jab and will be working with care home providers to book their staff in to vaccination clinics.
Any appointments not used for these groups will be used for healthcare workers who are at highest risk of serious illness from Covid-19. Everyone who is vaccinated will need a booster jab 21 days later.
This will be a marathon over the coming months, not a sprint, and the NHS will keep expanding the programme as more vaccine is delivered and potentially other vaccines become available.
GPs and other primary care staff are on standby to start delivering the jab. A small number of GP-led primary care networks will begin doing so next week (week beginning 14 December) with more practices joining in on a phased basis during December and in the coming months.
Vaccination centres treating large numbers of patients locally will be set up when further supplies of the vaccine becomes available.
For Government resources, information and leaflets:
- Covid-19 vaccination - guide for older adults
- Covid-19 vaccination - what to expect after vaccination
- Covd-19 vaccination – why are you being asked to wait
- Covid-19 vaccination – women of childbearing age, currently pregnant, planning a pregnancy or breastfeeding
- Covid-19 vaccination – first phase priority groups
We will update our website with more details about the programme as they come through and if you have any questions or concerns, please do get in touch with us here at Healthwatch West Sussex:
0300 012 0122