Buckinghamshire’s NHS services are urging people to ensure they attend their regular vaccination appointments, both to prevent outbreaks of serious diseases and to reduce pressure on local health services.
Routine vaccination appointments are still going ahead during the coronavirus pandemic, so it is really important that people continue to attend them.
Vaccinations can prevent some very serious – sometimes fatal – diseases, such as meningitis, pneumonia, whooping cough, diphtheria and measles. It is especially important to make sure vulnerable groups are protected by vaccination, including children, babies and pregnant women.
As long as those with appointments do not have symptoms of coronavirus or are not self-isolating because someone in the household is displaying symptoms, all scheduled vaccinations should go ahead as normal.
Measures are in place to keep people as safe as possible from coronavirus, at any setting that vaccinations may be taking place in. Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust sent its immunisation team to Dr Challoner’s Grammar School in Amersham on 1 May. The immunisation team used PPE gear and observed social distancing as they did their work, taking care to make sure the children were not put at unnecessary risk of exposure.
There, out of 179 available places, 171 children were vaccinated – an impressive turn out that the team hopes to see in other sessions. There are currently a further 17 immunisation sessions booked in at schools across Buckinghamshire before the usual May half-term week (w/c 25 May).
Sam Smissen, Buckinghamshire Immunisation Team Lead for Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, said: “We understand that coronavirus is at the forefront of peoples’ minds at the moment, but please do not underestimate the importance of getting routine vaccinations. They can protect you or your loved ones against some very serious, sometimes life-threatening, diseases. The great work done by our team recently at Dr Challoner’s Grammar School is an excellent example of how we can still carry out immunisations in a safe and careful way.”
Dr Raj Bajwa, Chair of NHS Buckinghamshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “It would be worrying if some people did not get their routine immunisations because they are concerned about coronavirus. Immunisations are as vital to people’s health as ever, regardless of the current outbreak, and there may be serious health consequences if people don’t get the vaccinations they need. So please attend any scheduled vaccinations you may have. We are working really hard to make sure you and your children are as safe as possible at these sessions.”
More information about vaccinations is available at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations , or you can contact your GP surgery for advice.
Pictured – Immunisation Team at Dr Challoner’s Grammar School