Thornbury GP surgery becomes COVID-19 vaccination centre
A THORNBURY surgery is among the latest to start vaccinating patients against COVID-19.
Severn View Family Practice, at Thornbury Health Centre in Eastland Road, started vaccinating patients from the Severnvale Primary Care Network, which also includes Streamside Surgery, St Mary Street Surgery, Almondsbury Surgery and Pilning Surgery, today.
It was one of the third wave of vaccination sites announced by the NHS as the new Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine is being used across the country.
The Healthier Together partnership of local health and care services announced details of the new sites this evening, and also said that a "super vaccination centre" at Bristol City's Ashton Gate stadium would also open for mass vaccinations next week.
People are again being urged to wait until they are called in to have their jab and not to go to one of the centres without an appointment.
And patients of Severn View are being advised not to go to the surgery for any other reason today and tomorrow.
A message on the practice's website said: "On January 7th and 8th 2021, we will be providing Covid-19 Vaccinations for patients over the age of 80 who are registered with us and our Primary Care Network of surgeries.
"Staff have been busy contacting eligible patients to book their appointments.
"Please do not call to book an appointment as we are only receiving a limited number of vaccines.
"We have prioritised those patients who are most vulnerable from covid to be vaccinated first and have contacted them directly.
"During two days we will be providing an emergency – only service. If you have a medical emergency you can call us as normal and our team will be on hand to support patients with telephone appointments.
"Should you need to be physically examined we have based a member of our team at St Marys Street Surgery to facilitate this.
"Please do not attend the surgery for any other reason on these two days as we will be solely focused on the vaccination clinics. Please call us for anything else.
"You can also call NHS 111 or visit your local pharmacy for advice on common health problems."
The move comes as coronavirus case rates soar across the country.
In South Gloucestershire, 1,177 cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in the week to January 2 - more than double the 528 recorded over the previous seven days.
It gives the district a rolling case rate of 412.8 per 100,000 people - up from 185.2 a week previously, although below the national average of 612.1.
In Thornbury, there were 47 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in the week ending on January 2 - up from 30 the previous week. In Alveston, Olveston and Oldbury the latest number was 17 - up from 7 the previous week; in Almondsbury, Pilning & Severn Beach the total was 28 - up from 17.
Since the start of the pandemic there have been 9,817 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in South Gloucestershire - around one in every 29 people.
There had been 262 deaths in total with the virus, including five during the week ending on Christmas Day.
The Healthier Together partnership said that by the end of next week, every neighbourhood area in South Gloucestershire, Bristol and North Somerset would have a GP practice vaccination centre up and running.
GP and vaccination programme member Dr Neil Kerfoot said: "We’re delighted to have received the AstraZeneca Oxford vaccine here at Kingswood Health Centre and in other sites across BNSSG today.
"There's still much to be done, and we are working tirelessly to ensure the vaccine is rolled out effectively to everyone in the area who needs it.
"Our shared priority at the moment is to visit and vaccinate care home residents and staff, as well as vaccinating the over 80s across BNSSG. My primary care network here in South Gloucestershire should have completed our care homes by the end of next week, which is fantastic. Now that we have more vaccine coming through, other sites won't be far behind.
"This has involved a lot of work over Christmas and New Year, and I’d like to thank all of our staff who are working so hard to make this happen - as well as the public for their patience and support.
"We want to reassure our over 80s population that if you haven't yet been contacted - please don't worry, we will be in touch very soon."
Alongside people aged over 80, care home residents and staff have been set as the highest priority group by the independent Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.
However the partnership stressed that it would "take some time to reach everyone who needs to be vaccinated", adding: "The NHS will be in touch when it is your turn."