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Former York Park and Ride site set to administer thousands of NHS flu vaccinations to eligible patients

Patients in the City of York who are eligible for a free flu vaccination will be able to make an appointment at the Former Askham Bar Park and Ride site from Monday 5th October as an alternative to visiting their GP surgery.

The site at Askham Bar, located on Moor Lane has been used as a Pay & Display car park since the Park & Ride site was relocated in 2014. Using this space will not affect the current Park & Ride service and will create a greater capacity for administering flu vaccinations to patients.

This facility will only be available for those eligible for a free flu vaccination and is by appointment only.

The area has seen some grounds maintenance in preparation for the flu vaccination service and practice nurses, healthcare assistants and pharmacists will be equipped to administer vaccines safely to patients sat in their vehicles.

11 GP practices within the GP-led healthcare provider Nimbuscare will offer their patients the option to book and attend an appointment at the site to avoid needing to go to their own GP Practice. The service is being provided with the support of all practices to improve the options for the people of York and to ensure we vaccinate as many eligible people as possible.

Not only does this free up space in GP Practices for health professionals to continue seeing patients with other health concerns, but it also offers what could be a preferred and more convenient way for people to receive their flu vaccination.

Patients should wait until they have received their flu vaccine invitation letter and follow the instructions to book an appointment online.

Professor Mike Holmes, Local GP and Chair of Nimbuscare said: “This year we have an expanded NHS flu vaccination program to protect our most vulnerable people, which has seen the number of people eligible for a free flu vaccination almost double that of previous years. This poses a challenge to practices particularly at a time when the number of Covid cases is rising again, and so the Askham Bar vaccination site will allow for more patients to be seen and vaccinated safely.

“Each year flu kills on average 11,000 people in England and hospitalises many more. It’s a very serious condition, and following the impact of this year’s coronavirus pandemic, it’s even more important that we protect as many people as possible from the effects of flu this winter – whilst ensuring the safety of our staff and patients through social distancing and other Covid-safe measures.”

The Flu vaccination service at Askham Bar will commence on Monday 5th October 2020 and will be via appointment only. The booking system will launch on 1st October and provide time slots with 15 minute intervals.

Patients who wish to be vaccinated at their GP surgery or a community pharmacy will still be able to do so.

Councillor Carol Runciman, Executive Member for Health and Adult Social Care at City of York Council said: ““Flu can be a very serious illness in its own right and is something we can protect against. This year more than ever it is vital that people get a flu vaccination.

“We have been working with a range of partners to make it easier for people to access a vaccination and to do so in a way that is safe in the times we are currently living in. This drive through site will allow us to administer more vaccines quicker than ever and is in addition to the usual channels of GP’s and pharmacies. I’ve already had my flu vaccination and I urge everyone who is eligible to get theirs as soon as possible.”

Other GP practices across the Vale of York are doing similar things on a smaller scale to free up their practices by delivering vaccinations in other venues. Eligible patients are encouraged to contact their GP practice once they have received their flu vaccination letter to make an appointment.

50 to 64-year-olds who do not have a health condition putting them at risk of the flu will also be eligible for a free flu vaccine later in the year. GP practices will keep this group of patients informed and are likely to invite them for a flu vaccination in November and December once all other higher risk eligible groups have been vaccinated.

Those people who do not fall under any of the eligible categories for a free vaccine should not worry as they can pay to be vaccinated at local pharmacies. Eligible patients can also choose to be vaccinated at their local pharmacy if they wish by providing their GP eligibility letter or text. 

More information on eligibility for the free flu vaccine can be found here: www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/flu-influenza-vaccine/

More information on flu plans in the Vale of York: http://bit.ly/VOYfluplans2020 

FAQs

I’m eligible, when should I receive my letter?

People have already started receiving their letters and the rest will be delivered in the coming weeks.

What has been done to make this COVID safe?

The area has seen some grounds maintenance in preparation for the flu vaccinations service and trained practice nurses, healthcare assistants and pharmacists will be equipped to administer vaccines safely to patients sat in their vehicles.

Attendance at the site is by appointment only. The booking system will launch on 1st October and provide time slots with 15 minute intervals and you won’t need to step out of your car- just simply wind down your window.

I’m not eligible for a free flu jab, but want to get one, how can I do this?

Those people who do not fall under any of the eligible categories for a free vaccine should not worry as they can pay to be vaccinated at local pharmacies. Eligible patients can also choose to be vaccinated at their local pharmacy if they wish by providing their GP eligibility letter or text.  We would ask that people wait to let those most at risk get vaccinated first.

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