COVID-19 Vaccine Update No 12
Published: 16 Apr 2021
Progress at a glance
NHS is urging people to continue to attend vaccination appointments
The NHS in Sussex is calling for people to continue to attend booked vaccination appointments and book your appointment as soon as it is your turn. It comes after the Government updated the advice about who should receive the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccination.
As a detailed review takes place into reports of a very rare blood clotting problem affecting a small number of people who have had the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, it has been announced that it is preferable for people under the age of 30 with no
underlying health conditions to be offered an alternative vaccine where possible once they are eligible.
The condition remains extremely rare; around four people develop this condition for every million doses of the vaccine doses given. There appears to be a higher risk in people who have had the first dose of the AstraZeneca (AZ) vaccine and that is why the position has been updated.
People who have already received one vaccination are encouraged to attend their appointment for their second dose, and make sure they receive the full long-lasting protection.
The problem can also happen in people who have not been vaccinated and it's not yet clear why it affects some people. The COVID-19 vaccine can help stop you getting seriously ill or dying from coronavirus.
Call 111 immediately if you get any of these symptoms starting from around 4 days to 4 weeks after being vaccinated:
- a severe headache that is not relieved with painkillers or is getting worse
- a headache that feels worse when you lie down or bend over
- a headache that's unusual for you and occurs with blurred vision, feeling or being sick, problems speaking, weakness, drowsiness or seizures (fits)
- a rash that looks like small bruises or bleeding under the skin
- shortness of breath, chest pain, leg swelling or persistent abdominal (tummy) pain
The NHS says the benefits of the vaccination, outweighs any risk and everyone should attend their appointment.
A Government spokesperson said:
“The Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is safe, effective and has already saved thousands of lives.
“As the MHRA – the UK’s independent regulator – and the JCVI have said, the benefits of the vaccine far outweigh the risks for the vast majority of adults.
“Everybody who has already had a first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine should receive a second dose of the same brand, irrespective of age, except for the very small number of people who experienced blood clots with low platelet counts from their first vaccination.
“The government will follow today’s updated advice, which sets out that, as a precaution, it is preferable for people under the age of 30 with no underlying health conditions to be offered an alternative vaccine where possible once they are eligible.
“When people are called forward, they should get their jab. Vaccines are the best way out of this pandemic and provide strong protection against Covid-19.”
Find out more about the Sussex vaccination programme - www.sussexhealthandcare/get-my-jab
Ramadan and the vaccine
Next week Ramadan is due to begin, and we want to reassure all those who will be marking the holy month that they can still receive their vaccination.
The British Islamic Medical Association has provided a statement to assure all that receiving the vaccine does not invalidate the fast and people shouldn’t delay receiving their vaccination.
Clinical leaders have also spoken out to reassure people about receiving their vaccination. There are also versions of this in Arabic, Somali, Sylheti, and Urdu.
Residents in Sussex care homes get vital protection as they receive second dose of the COVID-19 vaccination
The most vulnerable care home residents in Sussex and staff working to look after them continue to receive their second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, giving them maximum protection.
As at 6 April 2021, 84 care homes in Sussex had received a second dose visit from the vaccination teams from GP-led services and Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust. The second dose provides the most protection possible by reinforcing the protection given by the recipient’s initial immune response, triggered by the first vaccine.
Care home residents and staff were among the first in Sussex to receive the vaccine earlier this year, after being identified in the top priority groups by the Joint
Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisations, due to their high risk from COVID19. In Sussex we have one of the highest numbers of nursing and care homes per capita across the country and so this work is a significant undertaking.
We have now scheduled in the majority of second dose visits for care home residents, during the coming weeks. In addition, those people registered as housebound - either living in their own homes or a form of supported housing - will also soon have their second dose vaccination visit appointment booked in, from midApril. Second doses are scheduled up to twelve weeks after the first.
COVID-19 vaccinations for our health and care workforce
If you have not already had your COVID-19 vaccine, let us protect you by booking an appointment for your first dose now.
All eligible health and care workers, including agency staff, can book to have their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at one of our local vaccination centres through the updated Sussex booking system, or contact your GP to book your vaccine.
Frontline health and care workers are prioritised because they are at high risk of exposure to the virus and provide care to multiple vulnerable individuals.
Am I eligible?
At present, only health, social care and care workers are eligible. Full details of eligible workers are set out in the Government’s ‘Green Book’ (see page 11). If you are unsure if you are eligible for vaccination, please contact your employer. Please do not book a vaccination appointment if you are not eligible as you will be turned away when you arrive at the vaccination site.
If you have any questions, concerns, comments or suggestions please contact Patrick Brady – Email firstname.lastname@example.org Mobile 07977 50643