Tens of thousands of patients to receive COVID-19 jab at GP-led sites today

Tens of thousands of patients aged over 80 will receive a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine at 100 GP sites across England today, after GPs in the West Midlands became the first to administer the vaccine in primary care on 14 December.

Maureen and Gerry Hughes: first to receive COVID-19 jab at GP site (Photo: WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Maureen and Gerry Hughes: first to receive COVID-19 jab at GP site (Photo: WPA Pool/Getty Images)

GPs and staff at the Feldon Lane Surgery, in Halesowen, are understood to have been the first designated GP-led site in England to administer the COVID-19 vaccine to patients.

Maureen Hughes, 84, and Gerry Hughes, 81, pictured above, were the first two patients vaccinated at GP sites on 14 December - at the start of a first wave of the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination programme in primary care.

Around 100 GP sites were expected to receive deliveries of vaccine on 14 December, with more to follow throughout this week.

COVID-19 vaccine

Health and social care secretary Matt Hancock said on 14 December that tens of thousands of people had already received doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine at hospital sites across England - which are offering vaccination to patients aged over 80 attending for outpatient appointments or who are being discharged, and to care home staff.

Most of the first wave of GP sites to receive vaccine deliveries will begin vaccination today - with tens of thousands of people aged over 80 in line for a jab as practices race to deliver batches of 975 doses within a 3.5-day period.

GPonline reported yesterday, however, on significant problems with delayed deliveries of vaccine and other supplies at some designated sites - forcing practice staff to rearrange bookings for COVID-19 vaccination for hundreds of patients at the last minute.

NHS England has also confirmed that practices will begin delivery of COVID-19 vaccination to patients in care homes this week.

Vaccination priority list

Residents and staff of care homes for older people were the top priority group identified for vaccination by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) - but the fragility of the only vaccine approved for use in the UK to date has made rollout to this group extremely challenging.

Seven sites are expected to trial delivery of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine to care home residents this week.

As many as 280 GP designated sites were expected to be part of the first wave of vaccine rollout in England - although a requirement for 15-minute observation of patients after the vaccine is administered imposed by the MHRA following allergic reactions left some practice sites unable to participate.

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