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Tell us about your Covid booster

We’d like to hear your experiences of getting a Covid-19 vaccination in autumn/winter 2022.

Delivering the vaccination programme continues to be a massive task for the NHS and its partners and the way the services work has changed over time.

Your feedback will be shared with them to understand what is working well and what could be done better. All information you give us will stay anonymous.

Please how it went when you booked your appointment, what it was like when you visited the vaccination centre, and how things might be improved for the future.

Latest coronavirus information

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Vaccination Centre sign

Vaccination Centre for Hexham

A seventh large vaccination centre for the region will open at Hexham Mart on Thursday 13 May 2021.

Take-up of the Covid-19 vaccine has been exceptionally strong – 19 out of 20 people aged 50 and over have already chosen to take up the offer, and the number of people from ethnic minority backgrounds coming forward has more than tripled over the last two months.

Now the programme has moved to Priority Group 10, the NHS is asking those aged 40 and over to come forward for their vaccine.

The seventh large vaccination centre for the region in Hexham joins the six large vaccination centres which are at Newcastle’s Centre for Life, the NHS Nightingale Hospital North East, Sunderland, the Arnison Centre, Durham, Darlington Arena, The Riverside Stadium at Middlesbrough and the Auction Mart at Penrith.

These large centres operate in conjunction with local vaccination services run by groups of GPs working together in Primary Care Networks PCNs) and services offered by some community pharmacies.

The Hexham vaccination centre will be called ‘Hexham Mart Vaccination Centre’ and is based at Hexham Mart, Tyne Green, Hexham, Northumberland NE46 3SG.  People are invited to attend large vaccination centres and community pharmacy locations by the National Booking Service which is run by NHS England. Patients are being asked not to contact their GP.

The staffing and volunteers for the centre are in place, ready to see up to 800 people a day, vaccine supply permitting.

The decision to open a large new vaccination centre in Hexham was made in conjunction with local NHS partners so that the West Northumberland PCN, which has delivered over 60,000 vaccinations so far, could return to providing core GP services for local patients including those whose needs may not have been met so far during the pandemic.

West Northumberland PCN will continue to deliver vaccinations for their most vulnerable patients in Priority Groups 1-9, including over 27,000 second doses still to be given to those patients.

The Hexham Mart Vaccination Centre will provide a local option for residents of West Northumberland eligible for a first dose (those aged 18-49 years) alongside several community pharmacy sites which will be available to book via the National Booking Service.

Eligible people receive a letter or text message and are invited to book either online or by calling 119 free of charge between 7am and 11pm – only people invited to book can do so.

There are currently five community pharmacy sites across Northumberland with more sites being added to the National Booking Service across the region so people in Northumberland can access different locations.

The National Booking Service will now show appointments for Hexham Mart and community pharmacies, but not for appointments that are offered by existing vaccination services run by GPs in primary care networks.

NHS Northumberland CCG has also commissioned a Roving Vaccination Service which will continue to target patients across the county’s most rural and isolated communities. This range of services will help to ensure that anybody who wants to receive a vaccine can do so and that nobody is left behind by the programme.

While vaccine supply can be ‘bumpy’, people should not be worried. There is enough vaccine supply to make sure that everyone who wants to have a vaccination can do so.

Professor Neil Watson, Chief Operating Officer for the NHS Covid Vaccination Programme for the North East and North Cumbria, said “The NHS continues to deliver, with over 2.2 million vaccines having been given in our region alone, which is a phenomenal amount and something to be very proud of.”

I’d like to thank our fantastic teams who remain focussed on delivering excellent care and our patients who keep coming forward in large numbers to make sure they are vaccinated and protected from this awful virus.”

This seventh large vaccination centre for the region allows us to carry on this great work with the over 40-year-old age group, so we can get back to a sense of normality as quickly as we can.”

Rachel Mitcheson, Service Director Transformation and Integrated Care, NHS Northumberland Clinical Commissioning Group said “West Northumberland Primary Care Network has done a phenomenal job and we thank everyone who has been involved in this exceptional effort.”

“It’s right that primary care in the west of the county focus on recovery of local primary care health services impacted as a result of the pandemic, including continuing to deliver second doses to priority groups 1-9.”

Latest Covid-19 Information

Roving Vaccination Service

Covid-19 vaccination pop-up pilot launched in Northumberland

People in Northumberland are soon to benefit from new pop-up Covid-19 vaccination clinics.

As part of its commitment to reducing health inequalities in the county, NHS Northumberland Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has been working with the Cramlington Seaton Valley Primary Care Network (PCN) to set up a Roving Vaccination Service. This will see vaccines safely transported to people in the most rural parts of Northumberland as well as minority groups including Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities, those affected by homelessness and residents from a BAME background.

A transit van has been specifically modified and customised to help ensure that residents in remote communities and hard to reach groups are not left behind in the vaccination programme.

Already more than 200,000 doses of the vaccine have been administered to Northumberland residents and, thanks to the CCG’s partnership working with the PCN and Northumberland Fire and Rescue, another 100 received their first dose of the vaccine at the pop-up clinic at Bellingham Fire Station in Hexham on Thursday 15 April.

The vaccination team will be led by a team of healthcare staff from the Village Surgery in Cramlington, which includes a community paramedic, two practice nurses and a healthcare assistant. They will be supported by an admin team from the same practice, who will provide a vital support service to this clinic as they have done so far within the local vaccine sites.

Vaccinating from the pop-up clinic is Paula Jamieson, senior practice nurse from the Village Surgery in Cramlington. Paula said, “This new service provides people who live out in our most rural communities in Northumberland, who may find it difficult to travel to a large vaccination centre or their more local vaccination site, more choice as to where they can get vaccinated.

“Northumberland has a really unique geography with a diverse and disparate population and we’ve worked in collaboration with lots of different organisations to find the best and most practicable solutions to roll out Covid-19 vaccines. Piloting our pop-up vaccination service demonstrates this and also shows our commitment to ensuring as many people in Northumberland as possible are protected from Covid-19.”

Richard Hay, Head of Planning and Operations at the CCG said, “We have never seen a vaccination programme on this scale before and our teams in primary care have been working flat out to get the vaccine into as many people’s arms as possible whilst following the national roll-out guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JVCI) and have done a phenomenal job so far.

“We understand the uniqueness of Northumberland and we’ve had to overcome some big challenges with this roll-out. For example, the distance people have been expected to travel to attend a large vaccination centre.

“The introduction of the Roving Vaccination Service will make sure no-one is left behind. It’s a fantastic example of our local GPs working in collaboration across the county to deliver innovative services for the benefit of residents.”

Residents are being reminded not to contact their GP practice to seek a vaccination appointment from their practice or the Roving Vaccination Service. Practices will contact people when it is the right time – no one will be missed. People are also being reminded not to turn up too early for their appointments.

Find out more about the Covid-19 vaccination programme here

Covid-19 Vaccination Programme

In response to some of the questions people in Northumberland have raised about the Covid-19 vaccination programme, NHS Northumberland Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has put together a series of short videos. These will hopefully address some of the common concerns we have been hearing about the vaccination programme.

The CCG is responsible for the planning and buying of local NHS services for people in Northumberland.

In the videos, Richard Hay, Head of Planning and Operations at Northumberland CCG talks about how the Covid-19 vaccination programme is going in the county, addresses concerns over supply and safety of the vaccine, and how people will be contacted with an appointment for to get theirs.

 

One minute videos:

Why am I being offered an appointment for my vaccination so far away?

Should we be worried about the supply of the Covid-19 vaccine in Northumberland?

Why isn’t there a large vaccination centre in Northumberland?

Are people in Northumberland having to wait longer for their Covid-19 vaccination than people in other parts of the country?

Is the Covid-19 vaccination safe?

Why am I being told not to contact my GP about my vaccination appointment?

If I’ve had my Covid-19 vaccine, why can’t I mix with other people?

 

Podcast: How the vaccination programme is going in Northumberland, with Richard Hay of Northumberland CCG.

 

Visit our Covid-19 Information Page

Covid-19 vaccinations – the next phase

The Covid-19 vaccination programme in Northumberland, led by Primary Care Networks of GP practices has been successful in offering a vaccine to those in priority groups 1 to 4 – those aged 70 and over – by 15 February 2021. Thank you to those who have had their vaccine and who are helping to protect themselves, their loved ones and their communities. If you are over 70 and haven’t had your first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine yet, please contact your GP straight away or make an appointment here, or by phoning 119.

The next phase of the programme is to vaccinate those in priority groups 5 to 9 (everybody over 50 years of age) and the target date for this is 15 April 2021. This phase will also include delivering second doses of the vaccine to those already vaccinated in January and February.

If you are in group 5 (over 65 years) or group 6 (those aged between 16 and 64 who have underlying health conditions) you will be invited by your GP practice to have the vaccine at one of ten hubs across the county or you may receive a letter inviting you to make an appointment at the Centre for Life in Newcastle. If travelling to Newcastle is inconvenient for you, you can ignore the letter and choose to wait to hear from your GP about having the vaccination at a hub closer to where you live.

Read more about the NHS in Northumberland’s reassurance that people can choose to have their vaccine at a hub closer to home.

You don’t need to call your practice; you won’t be forgotten and will be contacted when it’s your turn – look out for a letter, listen for the phone and check for text messages, as you could be contacted in any one of these ways.

GP practices will be calling people on the basis of:

  • Age – this is by far the most significant factor in determining an individual’s level of risk of complications or serious illness as a result of Covid-19 infection
  • Comorbidity – individuals with a number of underlying health conditions have an increased level of risk from Covid-19
  • Ethnicity – individuals from a BAME background are more at risk from Covid-19

You can be prepared ahead of your vaccination appointment by thinking about how you might travel to the centre, make sure you arrive on time and take your NHS number with you if possible – this can be found on letters from your GP or hospital or your prescription.

Visit our Coronavirus Information Page for more on the pandemic.