New Oxford vaccine rolled out to general practice services
The new Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine is being rolled out to General Practice led services making it easier to protect care home residents and other vulnerable people against COVID-19.
The vaccine has been trialled at selected hospitals for surveillance purposes before being sent out to hundreds of community-based local vaccination services.
Unlike the Pfizer vaccine, the first to be approved, the Oxford vaccine does not need to be stored at ultra-low temperatures and is much easier to move, making it easier to use in care homes and to vaccinate the housebound.
Hundreds of new sites are opening at hospitals and in the community this week in the new phase of the vaccination programme, the largest in NHS history. This is on top of the 700 which were already open and vaccinating.
Seven vaccination centres will be among many more sites coming online next week, along with more hospitals, GP led services and a number of pilot pharmacy vaccine services.
Dr Nikki Kanani, GP and NHS medical director for primary care, yesterday said:
“The biggest vaccination programme in NHS history is already off to a strong start with around one million people already vaccinated against Coronavirus – this is a credit to our exceptional NHS staff.
“GPs, nurses, pharmacists and countless other staff and volunteers have been working around the clock to be able to launch almost 200 more sites this week.
“Combined with the arrival of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, we will now be able to protect many more vulnerable people against the virus and faster.”
The rollout comes after the vaccine was approved for use outside of hospitals by the four Chief Medical Officers and NHS England’s Medical Director, Professor Stephen Powis.
Care home residents cannot travel to hospital for a jab and Pfizer is difficult to get to hospitals so the decision will speed up the drive to vaccinate them.
Care home residents and staff were set as the highest priority group by the independent Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.
In addition to the Oxford jab, local vaccination services are being issued with small packs of Pfizer jabs which can be used in care homes.
When the vaccine was first issued it had to be shipped in “pizza boxes” containing almost 1,000 doses, meaning that care homes could not be jabbed without wasting supplies.
The NHS is offering GP services an extra £10 for every care homes resident vaccinated in January in a drive to get a majority vaccinated before the end of the month.
More than one million people have already been vaccinated by the NHS in less than one month since Maggie Keenan received the Pfizer vaccine in December.
The NHS was the first health service in the world to deliver a COVID-19 vaccination outside of the clinical trial.
The NHS was also the first to deliver the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine, jabbing Brian Pinker, 82, at Oxford University Hospital on Monday.
Current and former NHS staff have applied to become vaccinators, with tens of thousands having already completed their online training. They will be deployed as more vaccine supplies become available.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock yesterday said:
“We are accelerating our vaccine delivery plan so we can protect those most at risk from this awful disease as quickly as possible.
“The Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine can be transported easily and I’m delighted care home residents will begin receiving their first Oxford/AstraZeneca jabs this week. More than 1.3 million people have already been vaccinated in the UK, including 23 percent – or over 650,000 – of the over-80s in England
“We are aiming to offer vaccinations to all 13 million people in the top four priority cohorts by mid-February. This will ensure the most vulnerable are protected and will save lives.
“As our vaccination programme ramps up, I urge everybody to continue following the latest restrictions to keep cases low and protect loved ones.”
Latest News from
NHS delivers COVID jabs from cinema and mosque21/01/2021 14:15:00
Life-saving coronavirus vaccinations will be delivered from a cinema and a mosque from today as the NHS’s largest immunisation programme continues to accelerate.
NHS COVID jabs available at rugby ground, racecourse, food court and cathedral19/01/2021 14:15:00
NHS staff will start delivering COVID vaccinations at a rugby ground, racecourse, food court and cathedral as the biggest immunisation programme in health service history grows.
One million over 80s invited to NHS Vaccination Centres19/01/2021 09:15:00
More than one million people aged 80 or over have been invited to book a coronavirus jab at a Vaccination Centre, as the NHS accelerates the immunisation programme, the biggest in health service history.
Docs and cops warn on COVID-19 cons18/01/2021 14:15:00
The NHS has teamed up with law enforcement and security agencies to warn the public not to fall victim to con men trying to exploit the coronavirus vaccine campaign.
A&E visits 50 per cent higher in December than April COVID peak15/01/2021 16:15:00
Half a million more people sought help in England’s A&Es in December compared with the first peak of the pandemic in April, according to new data from the NHS, which show essential services were being maintained at the end of the year.
High street pharmacies deliver NHS Covid jabs14/01/2021 16:15:00
Life-saving coronavirus jabs will begin to be delivered at High Street pharmacies from today as the NHS accelerates the biggest vaccination programme in its history.
New NHS Vaccination Centres Open Their Doors Today11/01/2021 14:15:00
The NHS is opening its newest front in the fight against COVID-19 with the activation of the first seven NHS Vaccination Centres to jab people aged 80 and over, along with health and care staff, from today.
NHS organisations instructed to rapidly vaccinate staff11/01/2021 11:15:00
NHS England has written to Trusts across the UK to outline plans to vaccinate all frontline staff against COVID-19 following the rollout of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.