COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics – Information for Patients Attending for Vaccine
We are pleased to say that we have almost completed vaccination for patients aged 70 and over. All patients in this age group have received the first dose of their vaccination, with second doses being completed in the coming weeks.
We are now vaccinating patients who meet the criteria for Cohort 4 and Cohort 7 who have not already been vaccinated via their hospital clinic / consultant.
The vaccine we have been allocated by the HSE is the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine. This vaccine is given as 2 doses, four weeks apart and you will be given the date for your second vaccine dose at your first appointment. We have very little flexibility in appointments due to the fragility of the vaccine and the logistics of organizing these clinics.
The Covid-19 vaccine is offered free of charge to all eligible, registered patients who wish to receive it, in strict accordance with HSE guidelines on age cohorts and risk groups.
Please do not contact the practice looking for a vaccine appointment if you are not aged 70 years or over, or do not meet the medical criteria for risk groups Cohort 4 and Cohort 7 (patients aged between 18 and 49 years only) as we cannot offer you a vaccine. Everyone outside these categories will be invited by the HSE to register online for vaccination in HSE/mass vaccination centres over the coming weeks, according to age groups.
You can see general information about Covid-19 vaccines here on the HSE website: HSE COVID-19 Vaccination Information or call 1850 24 1850.
Due to the fact that the vaccine must be used within a very short period of time, our normal service will be reduced in the weeks where a vaccination clinic is taking place. The practice continues to be extremely busy with general consultations as well as vaccinations and therefore there may be a wait for routine appointments. We appreciate your patience and cooperation in this regard and ask for your understanding during the rollout of this very complex vaccination programme.
Things to Note about Your COVID-19 Vaccine
• The vaccine we will receive for administration to patients is Pfizer BioNTech (Comirnaty). If this changes for any reason we will let you know. Please note we cannot offer a choice of vaccine – this is decided by HSE supply. Please read the information booklet using the link above before you attend. You can see full details of this vaccine by clicking the link here: Pfizer BioNTech Comirnaty Vaccine Information
• The doctor / nurse will ask you a number of questions to confirm your suitability to receive the vaccine. Please see the questions you will be asked by clicking here: Questions before Covid-19 Vaccination
• The vaccine is given into your upper arm (similar to the flu vaccine) and you will need to wait for 15 minutes for observation after your vaccine before you can go home, just to make sure that you don’t get any side effects. If you have a history of anaphylaxis for any cause, you will be asked to remain on site for 30 minutes following the vaccine.
• Please arrive at the time of your appointment and no earlier/later – we will run to appointment times while adhering to social distancing guidelines. If we are running ahead or behind, we will do our best to contact you accordingly.
• Please arrange to be dropped off at the gate or to come on foot for your appointment if at all possible. Parking will be very limited and we ask that those who are mobile allow for others with reduced mobility to have preference in parking.
• If you need assistance getting to and from the practice for your vaccine, please bring a friend/relative/carer/minder who can assist you with this.
• Please wear a short sleeve under your coat/jacket and clothing that allows easy access to your shoulder.
• This is a vaccine appointment only – we will not be in a position to discuss any other medical issues with you and you will need to telephone for an appointment if you wish to see the doctor for any medical issue. We have to keep to a strict schedule to adhere to social distancing guidelines and required observation periods.
• Please read the information booklet using the link above before you attend. We will also give you an information leaflet on the day, but be assured that these are very safe vaccines. Some people will experience some side effects in the 48 hours after the vaccine, including sore arm, fever, headaches and generalized aches and pains. These can be treated with paracetamol and should resolve within 2-3 days. You can read a leaflet here about what to expect after you receive the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine: What to Expect After You Recieve Your Covid-19 Pfizer Vaccine
• Please note a fever following vaccination is a common expected side effect but if you experience a fever/high temperature lasting more than 48 hours and/or any symptoms of COVID (cough/ shortness of breath / chest tightness / loss of smell or taste) please contact the practice.
• If you have a history of anaphylaxis to any vaccine you should let us know. If you think you may be allergic to any component of the Pfizer BioNTech Comirnaty vaccine, please let us know, as you may not be eligible for the vaccine. Please contact the practice to discuss this if you have concerns around vaccine allergy.
• We will arrange an appointment for you to come back four weeks later to have your second dose of the vaccination. Please note that unlike the flu vaccine, the Covid 19 vaccine can only be given on specific days because it only lasts for a very short time after it is delivered to us, so unfortunately it will not be possible to change the day that you have been allocated for your vaccination.
• Please ensure you continue to adhere to public health guidance regarding cough etiquette, social distancing and hand washing following your vaccination.
We are very grateful for your patience and understanding during the rollout of this complex COVID-19 vaccination programme.