As of Sunday 17th January 2021, over 3.8 million people in the UK have received the first COVID-19 vaccination.
Individuals aged over 80, care home residents and frontline healthcare workers, including the Heritage Healthcare care team, have started to receive their vaccination to protect them from COVID-19.
The vaccination will now start to roll out to the next group of people in the priority list and people aged over-70 and those who are clinically extremely vulnerable will now be invited to receive the vaccination.
Vaccinations are currently being given at hospitals, GP surgeries, vaccination centres and pharmacies. If you are eligible for the vaccine, you will be contacted to book an appointment. You will need to take with you a face covering to wear and your booking reference number if your appointment is at a vaccination centre.
What to expect when you receive the vaccination at hospital*:
Your experience will vary depending on where and when you receive your vaccination. You will first need to sign in and let a staff member know you have arrived. They will give information about the vaccination and its potential side-effects, a form for you to complete and an appointment card.
You will then join a queue of other people waiting for their vaccination. If there are a lot of people, you may be asked to wait outside at first, but you will be able to sit and complete your form once inside. The form will ask you details about yourself and will have questions to answer ‘Yes’ or ‘No’, including if you are feeling unwell, have had a severe reaction to a vaccination previously and if you consent to receive the vaccination. There will be staff members on hand to answer any questions you may have and help you to complete the form.
You will then be booked in on the hospital’s system. You will hand your form to a staff member who will input the data into their system, before being taken to the next available consultant who will run through the potential side effect with you and your form. If you have any questions or are feeling worried about the vaccination, they are there to reassure you. They will complete the second side of the form if they are happy for you to continue with the vaccination.
You will be asked to wait a moment for the next available Vaccinator. When it is your time, the qualified healthcare professional will ask you to confirm your name and date of birth and will ask you how you’re feeling. They will also ask which arm you would like the vaccination. The vaccine is quick, and feels like a small, cold pinch in the arm, and is over within seconds.
You will be asked to wait for 15 minutes before heading home to ensure you are ok following the vaccine. You will also need to book your second appointment to receive the second vaccine for 12 weeks later.
Following the vaccine, you may feel some side-effects including a sore arm, headache or tiredness. The leaflet provided will highlight any side-effects you may feel, but if you start to feel unwell or have severe side-effects, contact your GP.
* based on the experience of a Heritage Healthcare team member. All experiences will be different depending on where the vaccine is provided, the time, the number of people waiting, and staff members available.
Our tips when receiving your vaccination:
- Wrap up warm – you may be waiting outside in a queue before going into the waiting room, depending on how many people are also there.
- Note down your NHS number – you will be asked to complete a form as you wait for your vaccination which asks for your NHS number. You can find this on a prescription form you may have, but there will be someone there who can find out the number for you.
- Get to the appointment in good time to find out where you need to be and to find a parking space – if you are having your vaccination in a hospital, it can be confusing which building you need to go to so allow yourself time to get your bearings.
- Wear clothing that allows you to get your arm out easily – the vaccination will be in the top of your arm, either your left or right depending on your preference, so wear a short-sleeved t-shirt or vest underneath a jacket or jumper.
- Eat a hearty meal before you go – you may be waiting for your vaccine for some time whilst you are at your appointment and you don’t want to start to feel hungry. Make sure you have eaten before going and take a bottle of water with you in case you need a drink.
Heritage Healthcare continues to support clients at home to feel safe and comfortable. To find out more about how we can support you and your loved ones at home, please click here to find your nearest Heritage Healthcare office.